Monday, June 28, 2010

The Many Uses of Lettuce

There are many ways to use lettuce, but I suspect we find more than the average family.  In addition to putting lettuce in salads,  on sandwiches, and eating it straight out of the garden, we also use it to make the occasional baby-doll hat.

The Pickle Project: Day 1- The Recipe for 14 Day Pickles

                                                    14 DAY PICKLES (Also called ICICLE PICKLES)
by Linda Lutz

Supplies and Ingredients
A  stone jar (crock) that will hold 3 to 5 gallons
2 gallon cooking pot 
10 pounds small cucumbers with few seeds..(Japanese or pickling cucumbers)
8 pints of white sugar  
1 tablespoon of powdered alum
1/8 cup, plus 1 teaspoon of pickling spices
2 cups of Morton’s regular salt (not iodized)
Canning jars (Pints, quarts or half gallon)
Canning lids and rings
Canning jar funnel

Instructions
DAYS  1-7:  Cut cucumbers in chunks 3/4 inches thick to make 2 gallons of sliced cucumbers.

Place in a stone jar (crock).  

 Pour 1 gallon boiling water over cucumber chunks in which 2 cups regular not iodized table salt is dissolved.

 Place a plate over cucumbers to keep them submerged in salted water.

 Let stand for one week.  Stir each day with hands.  (If you forget to stir it every day, you might have to skim the scum off the top.)

NOTE:  Do not count the first day as "Day 1".  "Day 1" begins 24 hours AFTER you put the sliced cucumbers in the crock and add the salt water.

Day 8:  Drain salt water from cucumbers.  

Pour 1 gallon of hot tap water over cucumber chunks and drain again.  Wipe any scum from sides of jar. 

 Pour 1 gallon boiling water over  cucumbers chunks.  (It is important to do steps 8 - 14 at approximately the same time of day so you have a full 24 hours between steps.)
                                                       
Day 9:  Drain and pour over cucumbers 1 gallon boiling water in which 1 Tablespoon of alum has been dissolved.

Day  10:  Drain off alum water and pour over 1 gallon boiling water.

Day 11:  Drain carefully.  Remove cucumbers chunks from stone jar and dry jar with a towel to  remove all liquid.
                        
Make syrup:

  • Heat 2 quarts apple cider vinegar in a large pot.
  • Add 8 pints (16 cups) sugar 
  • Add 1/8 cup plus 1 tsp pickling spices
  • Heat to boiling.
                        
Pour hot syrup over cucumber chunks.

Day 12:  Pour off syrup into a pan and reheat to boiling. Pour reheated syrup back over cucumbers.  

Day 13:  Pour off syrup into a pan and reheat to boiling.  Pour reheated syrup back over cucumbers.

Day 14:  Pour off syrup into a pan and reheat to boiling.  Pour reheated syrup over cucumbers.

Let set in stone jar at least 24 hours before canning pickles.  (Grandma Willie kept her pickles in the crock and never canned them.  She just put a towel over the top of the crock so the bugs wouldn't get in them.)

Canning Pickles:
Thoroughly clean canning jars by putting in dish washer or wash with soapy water and rinse with hot water.  Leave canning jars in dishwasher til ready to use to keep jars warm or let hot water set in jars until ready to pack “pickles” in jars. 

Drain syrup from pickles and heat to boiling.

Pour water from jar or remove one from dishwasher.  Pack jar with pickles.  Repeat until all the pickles in the crock have been transfered to canning jars.

Pour boiling syrup over each jar of pickles until it reaches ½ inch from the top of the jar. Using a plastic knife or spatula, run down side of jar to remove air bubbles. 

Wipe mouth of jars with damp cloth to remove syrup.

Meanwhile, pour boiling water over flat jar lids and let set for 5 minutes.  Remove from water and place on jar.  Screw jar ring on tightly.

Let set undisturbed for 24 hours.   A pinging noise will indicate sealing.  

After 24 hours, you can check for proper sealing by pressing on the top of each lid.  If the lid bends and you hear a noise, the jar is not properly sealed.  You can still eat the pickles, but they should be kept in a refrigerator.