Friday, July 14, 2006

Pickles, Pickles, Pickles

Just in case you were wondering what I've been doing.....There's an old adage about a picture being worth a thousand words. Well, this picture's worth 7 quarts of Diane's Kosher Dills. I made those Wednesday night after I got home from church. I made 15 quarts Thursday night, plus a half-gallon just for me, and quart and a half-gallon of my own recipe of refrigerator pickles. I like the teeny tiny cucumbers for pickles, the ones that still have the blooms attached and are crying for their Mama, about 3 inches long or less. BooMama, remember the
old burned oil smell in your house? Well, mine smells like garlic, cucumbers, pickling spices and vinegar. Pleasant for 30 minutes or so, but it gets old real quick-like, especially when you're in your second day of it. I have dozens of pic
kle recipes, but I've arrived at this one by fine-tuning a basic Kosher dill recipe over the years to my own taste. I make bread and butter pickles every couple of years, but no more of them than we eat, one batch will last us at least 2 years. I like bread and butter pickles with tuna, right out of the can. Go ahead, make faces at your monitor and make fun of me, but don't knock it until you try it.

I make my Grandma Lena's Salty Dill pickles occasionally, but not this year. I usually make them in a crock, because they have to ferment in a brine. It gets pretty messy when you let them ferment in jars. I love them, but they are a lot of trouble. I have no idea where she got the recipe or how old it is. She was up in her 80's when she died a couple of years ago, so no telling how long she had the recipe.

I love to make pickles, jam and jelly, can vegetables and freeze stuff, but mercy, it will make you work yourself to death! With garden stuff, it's feast or famine. Just 3 weeks ago I was wishing for cucumbers to pickle, and now I have more than I can use. Same thing with the green beans and okra. I don't care for green beans, squash okra after they're frozen, so we eat as much of it fresh as we can when we can get it. After eating anything 4 or 5 times a week, I can testify that there is such a creature as too much of a good thing. The sad thing about it is that in a few short months, I'll be craving all this fresh stuff again, and having to wait until next spring and summer for it. Ain't that just like people, never satisfied?

By the way, zztop, if you're interested in cucumbers, let me know, and I can probably get you a couple of 5 gallon buckets full. Seriously. Fresh, too. Call me if you're getting the urge to pickle. :-) I might be able to get you some other garden stuff, too, you'll just have to ask and let me see.

With the cucumbers and other produce coming in, I've had to drop all my other projects and devote my attention to the garden stuff while it's fresh. I like to finish one project before I start another, but that ain't happenin' at the present time. I am not much of a multitasker. Give me one thing and I'll get 'er done, but 2 is pushing it and 3 things simultaneously is pretty much beyond me. Except for cooking. I can cook 5 or 6 things and get them all hot on the table at the same time. Thanks, Mama for that. I think at least part of the reason for my one-track mind is that obsessive/compulsive thing I've mentioned that I'm afflicted with. I just need to devote my full attention to the project at hand, do it to the best of my ability, then move on to the next project. A lot of things I'm a perfectionist about, like washing greens and cucumbers. If you ever eat greens that I cook, you can be sure that each and every leaf has been washed and looked over individually at least 3 times, usually more. I know each leaf personally before it's ceremonially committed to boiling water. "Alas, poor Yorick, I knew ye well..." Or something like that. I don't even know what that quote is from, but I'll bet BooMama and Sister probably know. Shakespeare, maybe? Don't worry, there's plenty of things I'm not even close to being a perfectionist about. Like, maybe, for instance...finding out where that quote came from? And most housekeeping stuff. Yea, verily, forsooth.

Brenda, I haven't forgotten the ABC tag, I'll get to it when I dig out from under the produce that's coming in faster than I can eat it and can it, and around the household chores and projects I have lined up. Better late than never, I've always heard, and by the time I get it done, everybody may think it's a new meme again.

Well, I'm living up to my night owl tendencies again. It's after 2 am, and I still have to post this and wind down a little more. I hope Demon Blogger cooperates and doesn't give me any trouble posting this.

Wishing all my blogging friends and family a safe and happy Friday and weekend. :-)


Lisa said...

You go girl! Holy crap!! Someday I'd like to do some canning. :)

momteacherfriend said...

I like to put relish in my tuna so no wierd looks from me. I understand! Way to go on gettin git canned. Have fun with the rest. Provision is always good!

deandean1174 said...

lord those pickles look good aunt diane,yum yum, ive always liked yours and moms and aunt duckys cooking..take care and most of all grandmas we love you and miss you love dean dean

Barb said...

Am I the only one out here who immediately thought of BooMama? You know she's gonna love this pickle post! "Call me if you're getting the urge to pickle." Yep, she's gonna love THAT line!

This made me miss all my dearly departed older female relatives. I so remember shelf and shelf just stacked up with jars of all the wonderful vegetables they grew and canned. And I'm with you. I do love okra but it's best right off the vine, sliced in half inch chunks, rolled around in cornmeal and fried fast. Oh my. What I wouldn't give for a big plate of fried okra right now. Those are some mightly pretty pickles! xoxoxo

"The Glenifer" said...

Yum! I love homemade pickles! I'm growing a pot of dill this year, and every time I get a whiff of it I wish I had planted some cucumbers, too.

MomTeacherFriend- At our house, if we're out of relish, we don't even bother with the tuna fish. :)

Have a great weekend Diane!


Andre said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Andre said...

Well, aren't we just the next Julia Childs (well, minus the age and the annoyingly cracked voice...bless her soul)!

Not a pickle fan myself (except maybe the sweet, relishy types; which are really good on tuna and salmon). But it was interesting to read about the 1001 all-purpose utilities that you have for pickles. Using pickles for deodorizing, decorations, light bulb replacements, doorstops, bookends, as a writing tool, etc. >:-)

Sue said...

Call me silly, but I always love to hear that little "ping" that tells me that the jar sealed! I haven't done much canning in recent years, but I have cases of jars in the garage. Your pickles look great!

Connie and Rob said...

I am not much for pickles but I have to say...those look pretty!!!

Take care,

Dick said...

I am not much of a cook nor am I a pickle fan but I'll bet you will enjoy those for quite awhile. It is good to be able to make things last over more time than they would on their own.

Brenda said...

Barb, I immediately thought of BooMama too, then nearly laughed out loud when I saw her name.

Diane, I love bread and butter pickles and I bet they are good with tuna. Also I'm glad you're pickling cucumber and not green beans and okra - pickling is for pickles.

Oh, and I'm looking forward to your meme. Whenever you get around to it, no rush.

Have a great weekend!

Jeana said...

Get those taste a lot better than my 1.50 ones from Wal-Mart. Your comment about word searches made me laugh out loud. :-)

PEA said...

So, I'm not the only one who pickles and cans:-) My garden isn't ready yet so I have a reprieve for another few weeks but once it starts, I'll be busy. I make Dill Pickles, Pickled Beets, Bread & Butter Pickles, I can tomatoes, peas and string beans...also make jams and preserves:-)So, I can sympathize with what you're going through right's a lot of work but so worth it and tastes so much better than what you can buy in the store!!

Tammy said...

I Love Me some Pickle's!!
When I see jars of pickles I think of that Mayberry episode and Aunt Bea's pickles...lmbo!!!
Looks like you are a hard worker Lena Diane!!
I've just got some cans of tuna today at the store if you want to pass me a jar....

Sister said...

Nothing better than bread & butter pickles with (canned) tuna! LOVE it! Seeing your pickles reminds me of the jars and jars that our mama would put up every summer. Mama is famous for her squash pickles, which are absolutely wonderful. And yes, I have the secret recipe...probably because the secret is safe with me - because I'm not going to be doing any pickling in the near future! :)

P.S. And, your "Alas, poor Yorick" quote is from Shakespeare's Hamlet. Right, BooMama? :)

green eyed girl on planet earth said...

looks really good ,boy you are abusy girl , wish I could be there to chat and help making pickels , love that kinda thing , never find the time these days ,do you make beets as well? I do in hte fall hopefully this year , I can smell the pickel juice now , hummmmm hope your well friend , (((((((**))))))))

green eyed girl on planet earth said...

I MEAN P I C K L E S , sorry }pink cheeks here :}