Overripe cucumbers are those left on the vine too long, causing the seeds to increase in size and develop a smooth, yellowing skin. If you have ever come across one of these large cucumbers, you may have wondered what you can do with it. Try canning it into large pickle chunks for enjoyment during the winter months. Canning pickles is not as difficult as it sounds, and makes for a fun project for the whole family.
Things You'll Need
- 6 quart-sized jars
- Canning lids
- Canning rings
- 8 pounds fresh cucumbers
- 4 cups water
- 4 cups white vinegar
- 1/2 cup pickling salt
- 3 tbsp. pickling spices
- Fresh dill
- Canning tongs
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Wash the jars in a dishwasher set to the sanitize cycle, or boil them in water for 10 minutes. Remove the jars from water and let them dry.
Fill the canner about three-quarters full of water and heat on high to start boiling. A large canner takes up to 20 minutes to come to a full boil.
Wash the cucumbers with water to remove dirt. Cut the cucumbers in quarters lengthwise and remove the large seeded area from the middle. Cut the cucumber strips into 1-inch long chunks.
Combine the water, white vinegar, pickling salt and pickling spice in a large kettle to make the brine. Heat the mixture to a simmer while stirring well to dissolve the salt. Simmer the brine for 15 minutes.
Place a head of dill and a garlic clove in the bottom of each canning jar. Pack the cucumber chunks into the jar as tightly as possible, leaving 1/2 inch of space at the top of the jar.
Pour the pickle brine into each jar, stopping 1/2 inch from the top of the jar.
Boil the jar lids for two minutes in a small saucepan filled with water to soften the rubber. Place a lid on each jar and secure tightly with a jar ring.
Put the jars into the canner once the water comes to a rolling boil. Set the jars in the tray and slowly lower it into the water using jar tongs.
Process the jars for 10 minutes if under an altitude of 1,000 feet, or 15 minutes for altitudes over 1,000 feet.
Remove the jars from the canner and place them on a towel to cool. Check that each jar sealed after cooling by pressing on the lid to make sure they pulled down. Place unsealed jars in the refrigerator.