Have you made frozen cucumbers?
I recently visited a former teacher of mine, who offered me some of her homemade pickles to sample. They were excellent. Turns out you can make them very easily IN THE FREEZER! I just made my first batch with native pickling cukes and used a mandoline so they're not only beautifully sliced, but crinkle-cut, too. Here's the recipe:
FROZEN CUCUMBERS FROM MRS. B.
2 quarts unpeeled cucumbers, thinly sliced
1 large sweet onion, sliced
2 tablespoons salt
1 cup cider vinegar
1 ½ cups sugar
Place cucumbers, onions and salt in a large bowl. Cover with cold water and let stand for 2 hours. Drain. Dissolve sugar with vinegar on medium heat. Pour over cucumbers and onion; mix well. Put in plastic containers; leave ¼ inch at top for expansion. Freeze. Thaw before serving.
Move pickles from freezer to refrigerator the night prior to serving (or about four hours before use). Store in refrigerator after thawing.
I honestly don't know! I can only tell you they "work" and are very tasty. If I hear from Mrs. B. as to the logic, I will let you know. I did find other similar recipes on Cooks.com, but no explanations. I am so tickled by these fancy homemade pickles. Even the onions are crinkle-cut--they look very artsy. ;)
Sure take your time. I was hoping you hit the secret I've been trying to find out. We have a little German restaurant not far from my home, and the Grandma makes the most delicious bread and butter pickles. All I could pry out of the grandson was that she makes them every day and that no one knows the recipe but her. She makes all of the traditional German dishes for the restaurant using her family recipes. Some are good, some are so heavy.. but these pickles are to die for. They are crunchy fresh and the seasoning delicious, I think a touch of clove,and a sprinkling of love and who knows what else, but they are terrific.
re: chef chicklet
Hello again! This is officially day two of pickledom. I thawed them yesterday, had a sampling last night and just a few minutes ago (my stomach knows no clock). They are indeed crunchy and NOT slimy whatsoever. I snapped a photo, too, which I'll post later on when I get to my other PC.
Re the German pickles, you could easily try these (it's a cheap experiment!), see how you like them, then perhaps modify with spices and see if they're a match. And if you use a mandoline, please be careful slicing so you don't wind up with a chunk of skin missing from your thumb! :(
I've made these, and had them made by a few different ppl. They are always little on the slimy side for my liking. I much prefer just leaving them in the fridge instead of freezing them. I basically just make fridge pickles without the sugar. Freezing IMO ruins the integrity of the cucumber - probably does something to the cell walls of the poor thing which results in the difference in texture. Most frozen veggies become soggy / slimy in one way or another. I'm really not sure why ppl would freeze these pickles, but there sure are folks who like these.
Thanks for the reminder - I made these a couple of years ago and they're really good. Sort of a bread and butter type of pickle, with excellent texture - not at all slimy. I have always been a hard-core traditionalist when it comes to preserving stuff, but these have me converted, at least a little bit. I don't know why they work, but they do.
8 cups small cucumbers, scrubbed
1 medium onion
2 tbsp. coarse pickling salt
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
1-1/2 cups white vinegar
1 tbsp. whole celery seeds
1 tbsp. whole mustard seeds
Cut the ends off the cucumbers and slice them, crosswise, as thinly as possible. Place slices in a large bowl. Peel the onion, cut lengthwise in half, then crosswise into slices as thinly as possible. Add to the cucumbers. Sprinkle with salt and stir to mix. Let sit for about 30 minutes at room temperature.
Meanwhile, combine the sugar, vinegar, celery seeds and mustard seeds in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, then pour over the cucumbers in the bowl. Stir well, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 24 hours (more or less), stirring occasionally.
Transfer to individual freezer containers or zipper-top bags and freeze. They can be defrosted and eaten anytime.
Makes about 6 cups
Here's a pic of the pickles!
We heard back from Mrs. B. today. Apparently, you're supposed to keep the pickles frozen a week before thawing and eating, so I'll have two separate batches to try--these "overnighter" frozen pickles and "one-week-in-the-freezers." I still say they're very tasty right here, right now on day 2.