Monday, August 3, 2020

Sweet Pickle Relish - using up the garden giants :-)

Confession: I "found" four huge, oversized pickling cucumbers in my garden.  They weighed in at four pounds.  What to do with these giants?  Well, they were perfect for making relish- a double recipe.

One of my favourite preserving books is written by Cathy Barrow - "Mrs Wheelbarrow's Practical Pantry."  This recipe is adapted from Cathy's book.

This recipe makes about 3 250ml jars.

2 lbs            cucumbers (I used my seriously overgrown pickling cubes)
1 med.         onion
3 tbsp          pickling or Kosher salt
4 cups         cold spring water (not tap water)
1 1/4 cups   sugar
1 1/2 cups   white vinegar
2 cloves      garlic
1 tsp           dill seeds
1 tsp          yellow mustard seeds
1/4 tsp       turmeric


Peel the cucumbers, cut lengthwise in half and scoop out the seeds.Cut the cucumbers and onions into small dice (or use your food processor to finely chop, but not puree the vegetables).  I use the Kitchenaid dicer- a wonderful tool for making relishes.

Pour the cucumber and onions into a large bowl (stainless or glass), scatter salt over the vegetables and pour cold water over them.  Stir well, cover and set aside for two hours.

Strain the brined vegetables, rinse well under cold water, then shake to remove as much water as possible, press vegetables with a wooden spoon and continue draining while you make the syrup.

In a five quart saucepan, bring the sugar, vinegar, garlic and spices to a fast boil.  Add the vegetables, bring back to a strong boil and continue to cook at a big boil until the foam disperses and the mixture thickens, about 12 minutes.

Fill the hot jars with the hot relish, leaving 1/2 inch headspace.  Clean the jar rims well with a damp paper towel, place the lids and rings on the jars.  Process in a boiling water or steam bath for 10 minutes.

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