Crunchy, Sweet and Tangy Bread & Butter Pickles
Wednesday, August 31, 2016
These small-batch pickles boast a tangy crunch, with a teeny edge of sweetness, making them pretty much irresistible.
Homemade summery, vinegarized goodness, wham bammed together, jarred, done. Well that was easy.
Just look at what I made. Like a picture. And ohhhh baby, if you like Bread & Butter pickles you are in for a treat.
I've had a crush on Bread & Butter pickles for as long as I can remember. I have my Mom to blame for that. In the olden days, in my elementary school years, when it was just too cold and blizzardy in Calgary to come home from school for lunch, I knew what deliciousness awaited in my brown paper lunch bag. A Cheez Whiz and Bread & Butter pickle sandwich. Happiness is..... And on a really fortuitous day, the cheese and pickle would be sandwiched in a Butter Bun from the National Bakery. Yum, yum!!
This old time, happy memory comfort combo of flavours and textures still hits the spot, every once in awhile. But nowadays I like those pickles, more often, in gooey cheeseburgers, in still-hot-from-the-oven slow roasted pork sandwiches, tucked into a Brie grilled cheese, chopped into macaroni or potato salad or homemade Ranch dressing, resting atop a spicy kettle cooked jalapeno potato chip, or, or......and the list goes on.
All good reasons why I got all smiley and eager and gung-ho when I came across this recipe from the White on Rice Couple's great blog.
And damn sam, if Todd, of White on Rice Couple, didn't take it upon himself to figure out how to pretty much ensure that often elusive, glorious Crunch factor.
Since finding this recipe, with the easy peasy added step of letting the cut cukes rest and air dry overnight, I've already made 5 batches. Todd's crunch thingie totally works. Yippee!
You just cut your cucumbers and onions, salt them and let them sit for a bit. Then rinse and spread out on paper towel lined baking sheets overnight, to dry out. Next day whip up the pickling brine and jar 'em up. And, like Todd, I found I didn't have to process the jarred new pickles as they sealed themselves within a very few short minutes. I just always make sure each jar is hot from the sterilizing water and that the brine is simmering between pours to fill the jars.
So, if you have some old-time pickle memories, (or even if you don't!) of how delicious Bread & Butter pickles used to be, quick, quick, get your hands on some skinny cukes and make these badass goodies.
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Big, enthusiastic Thank-you's to White on Rice Couple's briny inspiration,
and yet another must-make again and again recipe.
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Crunchy, Sweet and Tangy Bread & Butter Pickles - Makes about 5 cups
Use skinny, crunchy Japanese or English cucumbers. I usually use 8 ounce jars, but tried the pint (16 ounce) jars this past time and they too sealed without processing. But of course, processing is an easy option.
3 pounds crispy, skinny cucumbers, sliced 1/4-inch thick, on a very slight diagonal
1/2 medium, sweet onion, sliced very thin
1/4 cup coarse Kosher or sea salt
2 cups white vinegar
1/2 cup water
1 scant cup of sugar
2 tablespoons mustard seeds
1 teaspoon celery seeds
1 teaspoon tumeric
Place the sliced cucumbers and onions in a colander, resting in a large bowl or in the sink. Toss with the salt and let rest for 1-2 hours. The cucumbers will release a lot of water during salting.
Rinse the cucumbers and onions and then place in a single layer on a couple of sheet pans lined with paper towels. Cover with another layer of paper towels and let dry overnight.
The next day, sterilize your jars. While the jars are still in simmering water, combine vinegar, water, sugar, mustard seeds, celery seeds and tumeric in a saucepan. Heat to a boil.
Fill your hot, sterilized canning jars with the cucumbers and onions, leaving about 1/2 inch of space from the top of the jars. Pour the hot vinegar mixture over the cucumbers and onions to fill the jars. Slide a chopstick down right along the sides of the jar to get rid of any air pockets, and then add a bit more brine if necessary. Wipe jar rims, put on lids, and seal the jars according to manufacturers instructions.
Store in the refrigerator and allow to sit for several days before opening, to allow the flavours to get all friendly with each other. Best served chilled, with a quietTa da!
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Here's an invaluable, quickie, little vid, of this pickle recipe from none
other than the White on Rice Couple
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