This year, for the first time, I grew Mexican Sour Gherkins, also known as cucamelons. They are in fact more closely related to melons than to cucumbers. The tiny grape sized fruit look like miniature watermelons and taste a bit like watermelon rind.
I included a few of these crunchy little morsels when I made a couple small jars of cucumber refrigerator pickles. A few days later I did a small jar of sweet refrigerator pickles with just the cucamelons.
We are eating a lot of cucumbers these days but the vines produce more than we can keep up with and they accumulate quickly. It was time to make more pickles. This time I canned them.
I cut the bitter flower end off the cucumbers and soaked them overnight in a solution of lime and salt to make the pickles more crunchy.
I was going to leave the cucumbers whole but changed my mind and sliced them instead after a thorough rinsing.
I made a sweet brine using white vinegar, sugar, kosher salt, celery seeds, mustard seeds, coriander seeds, cloves, whole allspice, bay leaf, dehydrated minced onion and dehydrated minced garlic. No, I didn’t measure anything.
The weight of a water-bath canner can crack the surface of a ceramic-top stove, as I well know after replacing it twice. So the canning operation usually takes place outside on the camp stove.
I expect to be doing a lot more canning this year.
They say to let the jars cool undisturbed in a place free of drafts. Hmmmm… Doesn’t seem to matter. Perhaps canning equipment is made better these days.