I must say one of the benefits to being unemployed (I am working again, thanks)was that this year's garden has been the best one I have probably ever had. The green beans and cucumbers have literally taken over all vertical growing areas and the tomatoes, okra and yellow squash are spreading out in all the other areas. I have two types of cukes growing this year- a pickle type and a long "hothouse" type. I probably have a dozen of the hothouse cukes in the fridge after making cuke salad and using more than usual on our green, tossed salad. The pickle cukes are just nuts here. I have pickled 11 gallons of pickles. There is literally a 5 gallon bucket in my spare fridge with pickles along with 4 more gallon pickle jars full. Let's not even go into all the ones that we forgot to pick and grew to enormous proportions. I brought some to work and only half have disappeared so far.
So I decided to offer my pickle recipe here and see if anyone else likes it.
1 qt white vinegar
1 qt. water
1/2 cup salt (I prefer to use kosher or sea)
2-3 bay leaves
5-6 garlic cloves
2t black peppercorns
2t coriander seeds
1/2 t whole cloves
1t mustard seeds
1T dill seeds
Put the vinegar, water and salt in stock pot and bring to boil. Arrange cukes in jars, packing tightly and making sure all of the cukes are fully in jar. Add leaves and cloves into jar. Put spices in a spice bag or tie into a cheescloth pouch and add to jar. When vinegar comes to boil, add to jar, covering cukes completely. Cover, allow to cool down and after a few hours, put into fridge. Allow to rest in fridge for at least 3 days, 5-7 days would be better. Enjoy!!
Please experiment with your own favorite spices or discover new ones. I have tried adding red pepper flakes for some heat. I am pondering using star anise for a bit of a licorice flavor.