Due to our crazy spring weather the garden went in about a month later than normal. I am just now getting cucumbers and squash. One of our favorite ways to eat cucumbers is via freezer pickles. They are very easy to make, taste great and as with any pickle recipe if all goes right, they will still be crisp after thawing! There are a lot of recipes out there online that call for onion, peppers, squash and other veggies. I came up with a hybrid of all of them that suits us best.
Use whatever your preference is to freeze these in – freezer bags, freezer containers or freezer jars. Please use the manufacturer’s guidelines for freezing.
Start off by rinsing the cukes. Use a vegetable brush or run a wet dishcloth over them to be sure they do not have any dirt or prickles on them. We do not use pesticides in the garden so I do not need to worry about residue but you may want to use a vegetable wash if using store bought.
Normally I slice the cukes by hand but last year I picked up a mandolin on sale and it makes quick work of them. Leave the peels on and thinly slice 7 cups. They are going to sit in a brine for 3 days and to avoid the chance of spills I put them in a freezer gallon bag (because they are tougher than regular storage bags) then sit it in a mixing bowl. When I am making anything with cucumbers, I taste a slice from each cucumber. Life is too short to eat bitter cukes! If it is bitter, it goes into the compost or to the chickens.
Slice the cukes up; measuring a cup at a time as you go so you do not slice up too many. Go ahead, put the bag in the bowl, and add the cukes to it. Slice the onions and measure the same way, cup at a time. Add to the bag. Pour in the vinegar and then the spices. Swish it all around and pop into the refrigerator. Every day for the next 3 days give them a stir. They are now ready to put into your container of choice. I use a slotted spoon and pack the veggies pretty well then pour the brine over to cover. Anything that will not fill up one of my jars goes into another one and in the refrigerator to enjoy now.
I like to freeze them for about 3 weeks before eating. When ready to eat, thaw in refrigerator.
- 7 cups thinly sliced cucumbers (with peel)
- 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
- 1 Tbs. pickling salt
- ½ tsp. celery seed
- 1 cup white vinegar
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- Combine all the ingredients in a large baggie then sit in a bowl. Stir well, close baggie and refrigerate for 3 days. Stir every day.
- On the 3rd day, using a slotted spoon pack the vegetable into freezer containers and cover with brine. Leave ½ headspace if using jars. For bags, push all the air out and for freezer containers leave about ½ inch headspace. Freeze. Thaw before serving.