Submitted by Carrie Kholodov
A sure-fire way to inspire creativity in the kitchen is to provide a gardener with a bumper crop! When I was growing up, I can remember these pickles sitting around on counters as they take a few days to crisp and spice. Now that I have my own kitchen, cucumber season means huge jars of brining half-sours fermenting from the wild yeast in the air. But mom’s sweet pickles are still my favorite by far. I find sweet vs. dill to be a battle line that is drawn between many pickle lovers. Seems that many people only like one or the other.
I thought of this recipe recently while begging a jar of home made sweets from my mom. She said, “I’m going to have to pass that recipe on to you, no one else in the family seems to care about them”. I hate to see a legacy recipe die, so I share it here with you. These are nothing like store bought sweet pickles. They are spiced like apple cider and deliciously crisped. I love to eat them on a tuna salad sandwich. I don’t even bother to dice them up.
Mom’s Sweet Pickles
Place whole cucumbers in large glass containers. Cover with boiling water. Allow to sit for 24 hours. Drain and cover with fresh boiling water for 4 days. On the 5th morning, slice the cucumbers.
Mix in a pan then bring to a boil:
8 cups of sugar
2 TB pickling spice
5 tsp salt
4 cups white vinegar
Pour over sliced pickles. Let stand 2 days. Refrigerate or process in a canner.
*Note: as with many old recipes that depend on your spare produce, I cannot tell you how many cucumbers to use. It depends on the size and how many you have left!