Homemade Bread and Butter Pickles

by feastonthecheap on August 9, 2010

Mary Anne here. ‘Tis the season for Kirby cucumbers! Besides adding a crisp, clean crunch to green salads, veggie sandwiches, and summer crudités, they’re the perfect produce for pickling. Effortless to prep, these sweet-tangy treats make a deliciously unexpected hostess gift – just pour the pickled cukes, along with their cooking juices, into a pretty Mason-type jar and cover the lid with a swatch of fabric. How Martha of me, I know. While I didn’t go the Full Monty and bottle these babies in sterile jars, they do keep in the fridge for 2 weeks stored in a sealed plastic container. This way, they’re ready and waiting to top your burgers, sliders and pulled chicken sammies. Happy snacking! 
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Homemade Bread and Butter Pickles
Makes 3 quarts

Note: You’ll need cheesecloth to make a “bouquet garni”. Simply cut a square large enough to accommodate the pickling spices and mustard seed. Place the spices and seeds in the middle of the square, and gathering up the sides, tie with a piece of butcher’s twine. The packet will resemble a sachet. After the pickles cool to room temperature, I leave the bouquet garni in the batch and store the lot in a large bowl, covered in plastic wrap, overnight.

Ingredients:
2 lbs Kirby or pickling cucumbers, washed and cut into ¼-inch rounds – $4.98
1 medium-large sweet onion, i.e. Vidalia, halved length-wise and then cut cross-wise into ¼’ slices – $1.42
2 cups cider vinegar – stock
1 cup maple syrup or sugar – stock
2 Tablespoons pickling spice – $0.22
1 Tablespoon mustard seeds – $0.09
½ Teaspoon Turmeric – stock
¼ Teaspoon red pepper flakes – stock
1 ½ Tablespoons Kosher salt – stock
¾ cup water
Grand Total Assuming Well-Stocked Pantry: $6.71
Total Per Quart: $2.24

Directions:
1. Using a 3-quart saucepan, combine the vinegar, maple syrup (or sugar), water, bouquet garni, Kosher salt, Turmeric, and red pepper flakes.

2. Bring to a boil, and then simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, slice the cucumbers and onion as directed above and transfer to a bowl large enough to accommodate the produce as well as the prepared pickling juice.

4. Pour the hot pickling juice along with the bouquet/sachet garni over the sliced cucumbers and onion. Cover the pickles with a small plate to keep them submerged.

5. Allow to cool to room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

thecompletecookbook August 9, 2010 at 11:28 pm

It is always fun making your own pickles and sauces. I find it very rewarding and they certainly do make brilliant gifts! Your recipe looks great! :-) Mandy

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feastonthecheap August 10, 2010 at 12:45 pm

Thanks, Mandy! We are still enjoying this treat and we were able to share our bounty with several friends. Great to hear from you!

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tom @ tall clover farm August 27, 2010 at 11:51 am

Maple syrup in pickles, hmmm, who would have thunk? I’m eager to try it.

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