Canning,  Cooking

My Very First Dill Pickles

The air is so thick with vinegar, my nose and eyes are burning.  There’s dirty dishes everywhere.  A tiny “pop” can be heard every few minutes. It can only mean one thing: it’s pickle time!  Tonight I canned my very first batch of dill pickles ever. 15 shiny jars on the counter. Cucumbers are running rampant in our garden; I picked over 4 pounds today alone.  I want to remember the abundance in mid-February, so I decided to take my luck at the classic cucumber dill pickle.

Although I wont reproduce the recipe here,  (I copied it straight from the Ball Blue Bookand I haven’t tried them yet to know if it’s worthy of your time!) I will say a few things about weeknight canning:

1.  Ambition is a tricky thing.  I had tons of it all day today at work, ‘Can’t wait to get at those pickles!’ The excitement lasted until just after the jars and cucumbers were all washed.  Ambition disappeared. The jars and cucumbers didn’t.

2.  Canning itself is not particularly hard, but as a rookie it should probably demand my full attention.  Trying to balance the Twins game, laundry, scrolling through Facebook, and the kitchen partner’s car repairs may not have been the best way to go about my first batch of pickles.  I will remember this if any of the jars fail to seal or if I get botulism.

3.  I really like projects that result in something yummy on my plate.  The pickles will have to sit for 4-6 weeks before they are really ready to go.  After all that work, having to wait is especially difficult.

4. There is something classy and beautiful about canning jars resting on the counter. One weeknight well spent.


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