We're big pickle eaters over here, and love a good stack of bread n' butter chips with our sammies. I developed this spicy version with dill becasue we like it spicy over here too! These are not super sweet and are sweetened with maple syrup. You can use sugar if you want/prefer. When the habaneros are ripe I use fresh and slice them thinly, but for now I added some of our ground dried chili peppers. I also don't add a ton of salt, like most pickle recipes. So if you want a saltier pickle add more to your taste.
For small batches, Iike this recipe, I make refrigerator pickles, which are just stored in the fridge and last up to 3 months. You can double/triple/quadruple this recipe for larger batches and can them in a boiling water bath for dry storage. Both methods are detailed in the recipe below.
Next on the summer pickling regime are beets! So stay tuned for that recipe coming soon. Ahh, I love summer so much!
Recipe after the jump...
Sweet & Spicy Pickles
makes 2 quarts
You Will Need:
- 2lbs pickling cucumbers
- 1 medium sweet onion
- 4 large cloves of garlic
- 2 flowering dill heads or some fresh dill sprigs
- 1 habanero pepper or 1/4-1/2 teaspoon ground chili
- 1 1/4 cup raw apple cider vinegar
- 1 1/4 cup pure water
- 3/4 cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric or 1 finger of fresh turmeric
- 1 1/2 teaspoons yellow mustard seed
- 1 1/2 teaspoons brown mustard seed
- 1 teaspoon celery seed
- 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorn
Wash cucumbers and trim off the blossom end. Slice cucumbers into 1/4" thick rounds. Fill a bowl with ice and water and let cucumber slices sit in there to extra extra crispy up while you prep other ingredients. Peel and thinly slice onion into rings. Peel and slice/crush/mince garlic, or even leave it whole. Wash and slice turmeric if using fresh. Set these ingredients aside while you prep jars and brine.
Sterilize 2 quart jars or 4 pint jars and lids by filling them with boiling water in the sink.
Bring water, vinegar, maple syrup and brining spices to a boil in a saucepan. Make sure to add the water first and then the vinegar, as a chemical reaction may occur if done in reverse. Remember to "do as you oughta', add acid to wata".
Carefully pour out hot water from jars. Fill jars with onion, garlic, cucumbers, fresh turmeric and dill. Pour brine into jars, enough to cover cucumbers and leave 1/2" of head space if canning. You may have some leftover brine, depending on how tightly packed your jars are, but it's better to have a little extra than not enough. If you have extra brine and some extra cucumber slices, just make a small jar with them.
Seal jars with lids. If making refrigerator pickles, allow jars to cool a little before storing them in the refrigerator. Let them sit in the brine for a few days before opening, the longer they sit, the better they will taste. Refrigerator pickles will keep for 2-3 months.
If canning, seal jars to finger tight. Bring water to a boil in a deep enough pot that water will cover jars by 2". Place jars into boiling water bath and cover, allow to boil for 20 minutes. Remove jars and make sure they are sealed properly before putting them up in dry storage. Canning utensils are mighty helpful so you don't get burned with boiling water. Canned pickles will keep for 1 year in dry storage. Refrigerate after opening.