Saturday, September 8, 2012

My Last Attempt plain, boring cucumber relish, for this year anyway.

I taste tested the sweet cucumber relish.  It was better than the dill pickle relish, but had an almost 'bread and butter pickle' taste.  I'm not a fan.

I taste tested the store bought jar in the fridge.  I can't say as I've ever eaten it straight before.  I can't say I'd ever want to again.  But it was definitely not even close to the desired results.

Back to the internets...  more recipes...  they're all the same, but different.  A little more celery here, a little less vinegar there.  Nothing really stood out to me.

Back to the fridge.  I read the label on my store bought jar over and over and over again.  Cucumbers are the main ingredient, followed by sugar, water, vinegar, salt, cornstarch, red peppers, and then the typical chemical concoction.

Back to the recipes.  I settled on this one, and then made a few adjustments.

I cut and deseeded a bucket of cucumbers, then ran them through my meat grinder.  12 Cups.
I had two green peppers in the fridge, so I ground them up, for just over 1 Cup.  I didn't have any red pepper, so I left it out.

I left out the onions.  There's no onion in the store bought version, and I don't like onions anyway.

I've had a bucket full of celery sitting on the table since the fair auction, so I was generous with it.  It's not on the store bought label either, but it is in every recipe I read online, and I like celery.  4 Cups, ground.

That gave me 17 cups of vegetation, versus 11.5 in the recipe, not quite double.    I'm Canadian- we like salt, and I have low blood pressure.  I doubled the salt,  1/2 cup.  Covered it with water, and left it sit for 4 hours.

 I doubled the sugar- 7 cups.  I left the vinegar as it was, 2 cups.  Doubled the celery seed, left the mustard seed.  That's a lot of sugar in just a little bit of liquid.  It took a while to dissolve, stirring constantly.

I strained and squeezed out the excess liquid from the veggies, then added them to the brine.  Simmered 10 minutes, then packed it into the jars.  Processed for 10 minutes in a boiling water bath.

This morning I taste tested it.  It's not bad.  A little too sweet, I might cut the sugar down to 6 cups next time.  The celery is a bit crunchy.  I think it needs to cook a few minutes longer next time. 

It'll definitely do.  This I can eat.  Plain, boring, cucumber relish.  Now to see if it'll keep.


  1. My cukes didn't do so well this year. I am doubtful that I will have any to can.:( I may have to visit a local farm to get some.

    Looks delish,by the way!

    1. This is the first year in about 7 that I've had a good crop of cukes. I'm afraid to stop canning them- it could be years before I get this lucky again!

      Thank you!

  2. Have you considered adding some tumeric? The commercial brands just list "spices" and don't tell you which ones. If your favorite store brand has a slight golden hue to it, it contains tumeric.

    1. I think my store brand has a lot of green food colouring. It's very bright.

      I'm not sure what tumeric is. I've seen it listed in a few different recipes this year, but I've just left it out. Perhaps I should buy some and try it.