Pickle Pics November 01, 2014 15:26

All pickles are not created equal!  Store-bought pickles are usually preserved in a vinegar brine and processed at high heat.  Traditional pickles are preserved by fermentation in a salt water brine, which inhibits the growth of unwanted molds and yeasts, while favoring the growth of lacto-bacilli.  If you're new to fermenting, our DIY Sauerkraut/Pickle Kit is a great place to start: it includes the equipment you need to get started as well as detailed instructions to walk you through the process.  Or, check out our on-line primer that will also walk you through the process, whether you're using our pickle kit or already have equipment you can use.  

 Pickling cukes with stem and blossom ends cut off.
Pickling cukes with stem and blossom ends cut off.

 

 If your cukes aren't just-picked, an ice water bath will perk them up.
Always use the freshest cucumbers possible.  If your cukes aren't just-picked, an ice water bath will perk them up.

 

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Garlic, peppercorns and fresh dill go into the bottom of the crock. I'll add a handful of grape leaves, too, to keep the pickles crunchy.

 

 I mix the brine ahead of time because it's easier to dissolve salt in warm water, but you want to let it cool before pouring over your cukes.
I mix the brine ahead of time because it's easier to dissolve salt in warm water, but let it cool before pouring over the cukes.