While my husband and I had canned jam, tomato sauce, and fruit butters before, we had never pickled anything. This year our garden, gave us a great excuse! Tons, and tons, and TONS of pickling cucumbers! So we decided to try the British bread and butter pickle variation of the traditional bread and butter pickle recipe from the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving.
The recipe was easy to follow and the steps weren’t difficult to complete. I was a little worried about air bubbles, but we didn’t have a problem. I just used the handle from a small rubber spatula to move the cucumbers and onions around in the jar to allow any air pockets to escape.
Overall, the pickles turned out well. Their flavor is much more pungent then we were expecting, especially compared to the refrigerator pickles we made last year. Their robust flavor makes them better suited for being included in recipes or in things, like sandwiches, than to eat them alone.
We had enough cucumbers to bake two batches of the recipe, but I would make them as separate, single batches next time. By the time we got around to canning the second batch, the pickles had gotten quite mushy. They’re still tasty, just the texture is a bit off.
I think next year, I’d like to try making fermented pickles rather than refrigerator or fresh-pack (quick-process) pickles.