I took no photos during this pickling adventure because I was so sure it wouldn't work. After all, I broke sooooooo many rules of pickling!
1. I used the wrong cucumbers!
I ordered a double batch of cucumbers in my delivery from Washingtons Green Grocer expecting that they would be small, pickling cucumbers. It ends up that Diva Cukes are relatively thin skinned, but are huge and have tons of seeds. Not what you want in a pickler, and not what I *thought* Google told me before I placed my order. Oops.
2. I did not boil the brine.
Heated it in the microwave. My new favorite way to make brine :-)
3. Made substitutions in the recipe.
Okay, hardly a news flash there. I am incapable of following a recipe. Or, as it seems, checking that I have all the ingredients before I start.
That all said, these are delicious pickles!
The recipe (mostly) came from Andrea Chesman's The Pickled Pantry. The recipe I made is below-- consult her awesome book for the original. (To start, she uses the correct cucumbers and boils her brine!) Also, her curried pickles are water-bath processed so that they are shelf stable, and will last longer.
Because I used the large slicing cucumbers, I was concerned that their high water content will make them mushy before too long. Water bath canning, and making them shelf-stable, seemed unnecessary. After tasting these, I'm definitely interested in doing it the 'right' way, in order to make more than one jar at a time. I think they would also be great cut into spears or thicker slices.
Curried Pickled Cucumbers
4 cups sliced cucumbers (I sliced thinly by hand)
3/4 onion, sliced thin
1 heaping Tbsp coarse sea salt
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp raisins
1 1/2 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
Mix cucumber, onions and salt in a bowl, and cover with ice water. Let soak for 2 hours or so, until the cucumbers taste slightly salty.
At the tail end of the brining time, mix remaining ingredients in a microwaveable bowl and heat until the sugar is dissolved and the mix is hot-- 1 minute did the job in my microwave. Set aside.
Drain the cukes and onions, and pack into a clean quart jar. Pour hot brine over the veggies, then put the lid on the jar and store in the fridge. Try to wait a day before eating.
Note: soaking the cukes in salt water- brining them, really- is a new one to me. I can't argue with the results!