EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


August 30, 2013

Canning, cucumber relish, and memories


1 cup white sugar

1 teaspoon mustard seed

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

Enough cider vinegar to cover cucumbers

Clean pint-size canning jars

Put cucumbers and onion through chopper to finely chop. Combine and let set for 2 hours.

Then drain thoroughly in a colander. Put into a pot on top of the stove, and add the pepper, sugar, and seasonings. Mix well and add vinegar to just cover. Bring to a boil, than let gently simmer for 30 minutes.

Place empty jars in hot water, keeping hot until ready to fill. Fill hot jars with relish to within half an inch of top. Clean any dripping off the jar rim, and put caps on, but do not screw caps on very tight. This will be done when cooled.

Process in a water-bath by lowering jars on a rack into a canner, using very hot water just below the boiling point, and one inch above top of jars. Be sure jars do not touch. Cover pan. Count process time when water comes to full boil, keeping at a gentle boil. Process in boiling water bath for 5 minutes. Cool jars on a cloth.

Note: To make a large recipe, use 8 quarts cukes, 8 onions, 8 peppers, 8 teaspoons mustard seed, 4 teaspoons turmeric, but only 6 cups sugar.

Five to 6 large cukes will make 2 quarts (“cukes” is how every farmer referred to cucumbers).

Basic steps of canning process

Heat jars and lids and keep hot and ready to fill by immersing them is simmering water in your canner, which can be a large stockpot with a lid.

Transfer prepared food to the hot jars, put on lids, lower jars into canner so they are covered by 1 to 2 inches water.

Bring water to a boil and process jars according to the recipe until a vacuum seal forms. For jams, for instance, this is typically about 10 minutes.

Canning gifts

There are few gifts as personal as ones that come from your kitchen. Put aside a day or two to preserve some produce now, when fruits and vegetables are at their freshest. You’ll have much of your holiday shopping done months ahead of time. A few jars of jam, pickles, or chutney presented in a pretty basket makes a wonderful gift.

Patricia Altomare invites feedback. Email her at patakitchen@yahoo.com.




Text Only | Photo Reprints

Photos of the Week