The Survival Podcast Forum

Farm, Garden and The Land => Gardening and Agriculture => Topic started by: racer038 on July 07, 2014, 11:29:48 AM

Title: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: racer038 on July 07, 2014, 11:29:48 AM
The cucumber plants I purchased this year to make lots and lots of bread and butter pickles, turned out to be table cucumbers not pickling cucumbers.  (I think the nursery had them marked wrong!) I am getting 8 to 10 of these monsters a day.  Folks tell me they won't do well as pickles.  I had a trade set up at the Farmer's Market, but she reneged at the last minute, due to the rule that they can only sell what they raise, which means she couldn't resell my table cucumbers. I'm thinking I will go ahead and try this with the younger (smaller) table cucumbers.  Is there any reason I shouldn't or does anyone have a better idea?
 
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: Skunkeye on July 07, 2014, 11:50:43 AM
I'd do just what you suggest:  pick them small and pickle them.  They may not be ideal pickles, but they'll still taste good.  They will probably be a little mushier than pickling cucumbers would be in the same recipe, but I've made pickles with immature slicing cucumbers before with no problem. 

To get the crispest pickles possible, pick them when they're under about an inch and a half in diameter, before the seeds develop.  Then pickle them as soon as you can after harvesting.  The fresher they are when you start, the better the pickles will be.  You might also try adding calcium chloride if your recipe doesn't call for it (sold as Ball Pickle Crisp granules), to firm up the cucumbers a bit.
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: Cedar on July 07, 2014, 12:16:08 PM
And add a grape leaf to the jar.

Cedar
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: racer038 on July 09, 2014, 03:30:12 AM
1st batch was just fine.  Cedar, why the grape leaf?
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: Aniera on July 09, 2014, 07:51:56 AM
Oh that's a bummer :(.  Maybe you could try them as kimchi cucumbers, I just made a batch last night from a recipe I found here: http://drbenkim.com/how-to-make-cucumber-kim-chi.htm .  I used oversized pickling cucumbers (I always forget to pick them when they are of the right size) and it seems fine.  They don't seem to need to be so crunchy since they are heavily spiced. 
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: gopack84 on July 09, 2014, 08:10:04 AM
I don't know the why, but just as an observation, I do know my Grandma always put a grape leaf in the bottom of her pickles back when she was still around and doing canning and pickling and all that. I should have asked her but that opportunity is now gone. :(
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: Cedar on July 09, 2014, 08:29:42 AM
Grape leaves have an enzyme which keeps pickles crisp and not go soft, which could have been an issue in not using pickling cukes.

Cedar
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: Morning Sunshine on July 09, 2014, 10:04:51 AM
do you wash the grape leaf?  just give it a rinse and throw it in?  On the bottom of the jar or on top?  Does it matter?  Any grape variety? 
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: archer on July 09, 2014, 10:58:20 AM
my family used to just rinse it and push it to the bottom of the jar.
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: nkawtg on July 09, 2014, 11:40:22 AM
Who knew back then that grape leaves contained an enzym to promote crisp pickles.
I'm sure this method has been passed down for generations
I have to wonder how they figured that out?
Title: Re: Wrong cucumbers
Post by: Cedar on July 09, 2014, 01:33:54 PM
do you wash the grape leaf?  just give it a rinse and throw it in?  On the bottom of the jar or on top?  Does it matter?  Any grape variety?

Wash it. Chuck it in.. Most people put it in the side to make a 'pretty jar'. But no.. it doesn't matter. And any variety. Wine or table grape.

Cedar