Hand Me Downs
When a recipe is handed down from person to person to person, you know it’s a keeper. This recipe came from a neighbor, to my dad, to me, then to my husband, who then used them in his restaurants on the burger menu.
This is a simple recipe for preparing equally sweet and tart pickles, with the bounty of English cucumbers from the garden. English cucumbers are also known as the seedless and burp-less varieties. If you do not have this variety in your garden, look for availability at the Farmer’s Market. Store-bought cucumbers will also work well. You will find them in the produce department tightly wrapped in plastic, as they have a thinner skin.
Bread and Butter Pickles
This is a simple recipe for preparing equally sweet and tart bread and butter pickles with seedless/burp-less English cucumbers. If you are not overloaded with cucumbers from the garden and want to make only one quart, divide the ingredients by 4.
Have two 1/2 gallon, or four 1 quart, mason jars at the ready.
Simmer the Brine
In a sauce pot, combine vinegar, sugar, salt, celery, mustard seeds and turmeric. Heat to a simmer, stirring to dissolve sugar. Once sugar is dissolved, turn off heat, and let the brine cool back to room temp.
Prep Cucumber and Onion
With a sharp knife (Chef's, Nakiri, or Santoku), or by using a mandolin, slice cucumbers into rounds about 1/4 inch thick. Julienne the onions to 1/2 inch thickness.
Fill Jars with Produce
Layer cucumber slices with cloves of garlic and onion, dividing into even portions between the jars.
Top with Cooled Brine
Once brine has cooled, pour over cucumbers filling to the brim. Cap the jars and place in the
refrigerator for 5 days to pickle. Keep stored in the refrigerator.
- Thicker slices will give a crisper texture to the pickle and will take a few days longer to brine; however, you can make these pickles with thinner slices, and they will be ready to eat sooner.
- Cucumber quantity is approximate. To completely fill the jars, reduce or increase the cucumbers and onions accordingly.
- If you do not have whole garlic cloves and would prefer to use prepared chopped/minced garlic, add approximately 2 Tbsp to the brine, adding more or less to taste.
- This pickling brine can also be used for other vegetables (e.g. carrots, cauliflower).
- You can also "cheat" and not heat the brine before adding it to the cucumbers. It still has a wonderful bright flavor (that's the way my dad makes them).