Friday, July 29, 2011

Green Lime Cucumber Pickles and Squash Lime Pickles

Thank you Uncle Charles. These are from the cukes you brought me this week. They turned into my Green Lime Pickles. I sure hope your cucumber plants keep producing and Aunt Agnes gets sick of putting them up because I'd love to do one batch of dill pickles before the season ends.

Anyway, this is the way I grew up with lime pickles looking. At the right is a jar of the leftover syrup. Is that not atrocious!

When I canned the first batch and didn't have any food coloring, the finished product just seemed wrong to me. Yet after canning these and looking at that green syrup, I don't think I'm going to do the green ones anymore.

The cooking syrup.

The pickles close up.

The soaking cucumbers.

I was surprised at how the lime solution wouldn't stay mixed. However, even though all the lime seemed to settle to the bottom, it didn't seem to matter a bit in the curing of the vegetables.

Of course, I'm tweaking the recipe. I've been using the recipe on the back of the jar of Mrs. Wages Pickling Lime. I think they need more spice, so the next batch I do, I'll put a quarter-teaspoon of spice directly in each jar. I've also cut the sugar back by a cup.

I tried an experiment with these that I won't repeat. I wanted to save the solution and use it for another batch. So I didn't boil the cukes in the solution nor soak them overnight. Instead I boiled them in water. Big fail. The cukes began to turn brown from the center out. Who knew? Fortunately, the green food coloring disguises it.

Following are pics of the lime squash pickles I made. I cut up squash, onions and green peppers. The onions got the greatest border of yellow on them as they soaked. I added a bit of cinnamon to the recipe for these.

Soaking squash, onions and green peppers.
The finished produce.
Here is my recipe adapted from Mrs. Wages Pickling Lime.
  • I only cook the pickles in the syrup until they are hot through, not 35 minutes as the recipe calls for.
  • If I don't have a lot of cukes or whatever, I half the recipe.
  • There is always syrup left over.
  • If you don't have a container that holds a full 2 gallons, don't freak. Just make sure to use enough solution that the cukes are covered and floating fairly free.  Toss the left-over lime solution.
  • You can mix the lime solution in batches by gallons if you don't have huge containers.
7 lbs. cucumbers (at least 7 for a full recipe)
1 cup Pickling Lime
2 gallons water
8 cups distilled white vinegar, 5% acidity
7 cups sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons pickling salt
2 teaspoons of pickling spice

  1. Mix 1 cup pickling lime with 2 gallons water. Soak sliced cukes in lime solution overnight. Do not use aluminum.
  2. Drain cukes into a colander and discard lime solution. Rinse cukes 3 times in cold water. Soak 3 hours in ice water.
  3. Combine vinegar, sugar, salt and pickling spice in a large pot. Bring to a boil and stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove syrup from heat and add cukes. Soak 5-6 hours or overnight.
  4. Boil slices in syrup until hot through. Fill sterilized jars with hot slices. Pour hot syrup into the jars leaving 1/2 inch head space. Clean each jar rim and cap as filled.
  5. Process pints 10 minutes, quarts 15 minutes in a boiling water bath canner. I start processing time after water begins boiling.*
  6. Remove from canner and let sit overnight on a towel on the the counter. The next day, remove the rings and rinse jars to remove any sticky syrup. Date jars and store. Refrigerate any unsealed jars.

*Processing time is for altitudes less than 1000 feet. If over 1000 feet, increase processing time 1 minute for each 1000 feet of altitude.

1 comment:

Debbi said...

yum! I probably would not add the coloring either.