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Making Pickles

July 14th, 2009

On Sunday evening I went out and picked 4 Boston Pickling Cucumbers that were the perfect size for pickling in spears. I have been reading through the book I got the other day and I settled on a quick pickle recipe.
I reduced the recipe because most of them call for several pounds of cucumbers and I only had about 1 and a quarter pound. So I found a recipe that made 1 quart. I changed it a bit, because I just can’t seem to follow a recipe by the book.
We’ll see how they turn out, I didn’t can them because it was such a small batch. I’m basically brining them in the fridge for a month or so.
Here’s the recipe I used:

Quick Small Batch Dill Pickles
4 pickling cucumbers (around 1 pound)
1 cup water
7/8 cup of white wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of pickling salt
2 garlic cloves
8 peppercorns
2 teaspoons of pickling spice (or a pinch of flaked red pepper)
fresh dill sprigs
8 sour cherry leaves (they’re supposed to promote crispness) or 3-4 grape leaves

Bring water, vinegar and salt to a boil. Meanwhile scrub and cut pickles into desired sizes. Add pickling spices, peppercorns, fresh dill, cherry leaves to quart canning jar. Add pickles to jar and pour brine over the pickles. Seal with lid and put in refrigerator for at least one month. Alternately you can water bath can pints or quarts for 10 minutes .

I’ll let you know in a month or so how they turned out. My next batch will probably be using a different recipe, perhaps I’ll try soaking the cucumbers in salt before I pickle them. Or perhaps I’ll make some fermented pickles.

Do you like sour or sweet pickles?

20 Comments to “Making Pickles”
  1. Chicago Mike on July 14, 2009 at 8:06 am

    I like SPICY HOT pickles. yum.

    Reply to Chicago Mike's comment

  2. Dave on July 14, 2009 at 8:16 am

    Mmmm. Looks good! We need to do that, we have cucumbers coming out our ears!
    .-= Dave´s last blog ..The Stowaway Plants =-.

    Reply to Dave's comment

  3. sarah on July 14, 2009 at 9:10 am

    That sounds like a great recipe. Your photos are so crisp, I wanted to reach in and grab a cucumber.
    I like both sweet and sour pickles. My mother-in-law makes some hot ones that are so good. They have some kind of chili in them. I am hoping she makes them again this year.
    .-= sarah´s last blog ..Champagne air =-.

    Reply to sarah's comment

  4. warren on July 14, 2009 at 10:08 am

    I like sweet or sour pickles. We make our pickles out of zucchini or yellow squash rather than cukes though…we don’t even plant cukes any more!
    .-= warren´s last blog ..Moving Bees =-.

    Reply to warren's comment

  5. Mrs. Finch on July 14, 2009 at 10:53 am

    I don’t like either kind of pickles, but i Love love love the smell. Mr. finch likes bread and butter pickles. We did plant some, but they’re only nubbins right now. Patience, I’m told is what’s needed most right now. :)

    Reply to Mrs. Finch's comment

  6. Daphne on July 14, 2009 at 11:55 am

    I like my pickles sour, slightly hot with a bit of sweetness. So I want it all. BTW I do refrigerator pickles all the time and they never make it to a month. After a few days I start eating them. So far no cukes from the garden with the north east being so cold and dark (last year I was eating them in the middle of June), so I’ve taken to pickling my peas. I seem to have way too many of them. I’ve found I like pickled snap peas just as much as I like pickled cucumbers.
    .-= Daphne´s last blog ..Sungold F2 Update, July 2009 =-.

    Reply to Daphne's comment

  7. inadvertent farmer on July 14, 2009 at 12:48 pm

    As long as its crisp I love them both…I will be curious to see if the sour cherry leaves help, this is one I’ve never heard of before! Kim
    .-= inadvertent farmer´s last blog ..Sister to Sister…Gardens of Contrast =-.

    Reply to inadvertent farmer's comment

  8. ruralrose on July 14, 2009 at 2:01 pm

    This is an excellent recipe. Although I never leave comments, you are so busy and i would only be repeating ooohs and aaaaahs, your blog is very valueable on the net. Peace for all
    .-= ruralrose´s last blog ..Silver Parrot =-.

    Reply to ruralrose's comment

    • Susy on July 14, 2009 at 2:13 pm

      I love getting comments and finding out who’s reading, thanks!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  9. Kelly on July 14, 2009 at 5:16 pm

    Those look absolutely delicious, and they’re not even pickled yet!

    I personally prefer a sour pickle, although it wasn’t always like that. When I was a kid a really hated sour pickles and ate only the sweet ones. Now I can’t stand the sweet ones.
    .-= Kelly´s last blog ..And The Garden Comes Into Its Own =-.

    Reply to Kelly's comment

  10. Kelly on July 15, 2009 at 3:14 pm

    I agree, they look good already. I like ALL pickles – and not just because I am pregnant :)
    .-= Kelly´s last blog ..More PT with Miss Abby =-.

    Reply to Kelly's comment

  11. pam on July 15, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    Those look great! I can’t wait to see how they turn out!
    .-= pam´s last blog ..Southeast Asian Shrimp and Grapefruit Salad =-.

    Reply to pam's comment

  12. Jean on July 20, 2009 at 10:37 am

    Just moved to a rural area after living in a MAJOR Florida city. One of my neighbors gave me a jar of “lime pickles”. They are sweet and crisp and wonderful. They are now my favorite pickles. I need to ask the neighbor for the recipe!
    Anyone out there have a recipe for “lime pickles”?

    Reply to Jean's comment

    • Susy on July 20, 2009 at 12:45 pm

      MMM, lime pickles, that sounds delicious! There is a recipe in The Joy of Pickling for brining lemons and limes.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  13. neal on July 6, 2010 at 7:52 pm

    So did you put the lid on before the brim cooled down, or after? I’m assuming you let the whole thing (lid/no lid) cool down before putting in the fridge?

    Reply to neal's comment

    • Susy on July 6, 2010 at 9:57 pm

      Yes, I usually allow this to cool before adding the lid and putting in the fridge.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  14. Cucumbers, Pickles or Both? | Chiot's Run on July 21, 2010 at 4:47 am

    […] a recipe for Small Batch Dill Pickles in The Joy of Pickling. They were very tasty, and I ended up making a few batches. If you only have a few pickles I’d highly recommend using this recipe, it makes a zesty dill […]

    Reply to Cucumbers, Pickles or Both? | Chiot’s Run's comment

  15. sarah on July 23, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    Plan to follow this recipe (thanks for posting! We are up against a small batch) where to buy sour cherry leaves or grape leaves?? Thanks for the wonderful posts :)

    Reply to sarah's comment

  16. sweet mamma j on August 21, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    Just wondering here in late August of 2011 the definitive answer on how these small batch recipes worked for you. I make them from the old school grandma recipe my mom handed down, but I do have a sour cherry tree in the yard and wondered if you found this something significant in the recipe? Am intrigued…I am also on Facebook…please let me know fellow garden photographer J

    Reply to sweet mamma j's comment

    • Susy on August 22, 2011 at 12:48 am

      I love using the small batch recipes so I can try a bunch of different ones to come across a favorite. I add the cherry leaves when the recipes calls for it, I think they add a tiny bit of flavor. I haven’t been able to tell if the pickles using them are crisper or not, I haven’t really done any testing.

      Reply to Susy's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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