STEP 1: Buy pickling (Kirby) cucumbers at the Farmer’s Market (yes, there is a difference between these and regular cucumbers, specifically a thinner skin allowing the brine to penetrate).
STEP 2: Wash, dry and slice said cucumbers.
STEP 3: Make a Pickling Spice and a Brine. Click here for the recipe I used
STEP 4: Add the cucumbers to canning jars, adding a little of the pickling spice and dill as you stack them. When your jar is full, cover completely with the brine.
STEP 5: Store jars with their lids loose in a cool, dark place for 3-6 days to ferment.
For complete instructions, try this recipe. My pickles were less crunchy than I would have liked and next time, I’ll use less clove. Pick your Own has tons of information and ideas. While, I won’t be opening up a pickle stand anytime soon, it was a good first attempt. I can’t wait to pickle green beans when they are at their peak.
If you are in Los Angeles and need a hands on step-by-step lesson on making homemade pickles (I think I might!), check out Chicks with Knifes Workshop at Surfas on February 20th. I was a little stunned by the $125 price tag, but trial and error can add up, especially if grandma isn’t around to help you.
If you want to ease your way in, try this book “Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It”. Don’t miss the how-to video!