We are happy to present you with the second installment of the pickleventures of Mason, our roving blogger from the Great American Northwest. Please enjoy.
Smoke 'em if you got 'em!
Smoky Pickle Breakdown
The Empire Smokes Pickles
Insert Oral Sex Joke Here
This dill lacks the flowers that I made such a big deal about in Picklestorm I. I hope I haven't made a grave error. We'll know in a few weeks. Let's press on and not allow ourselves to get bogged down in details.
L –R: Hart and Jason, musician friends of mine. Jason does pull-ups. Me? I'm a push-up man. When the two of us hang out, we sort of complete this weird, muscular circuit. That came out wrong. Again, let's press on.
Let's talk hot liquids. Really hot liquids, along with obsessively well-scrubbed cucumbers are the foundation of successful canning – especially when you don't double-boil the finished product. Double boiling has got to be the chief enemy of crispness. I'll trade safety for crispness all day long. To keep everything hot, my own father pioneered the foolproof Three Pot Method.
1. A pot of boiling water where the lids remain sterile while they await their final home atop a jar of pickles.
2. Mother brine: the big pot of boiling brine which feeds…
3. Baby Brine. Keep Baby boiling, too. Baby is much easier to handle than Mother. You pour the contents of Baby Brine into the packed jars.
A little swig of whisky to help beat the heat (the kitchen was a sweaty, vinegary environment):
Heaven, for me, will look something like the above picture.
And just like that, we're done. Let the jars cool upside-down and wait for the real world to come creeping back into your kitchen, supplanting that magical, pickle-making, dreamy feeling.