Thursday, July 29, 2010

Canning - Relish

We went to a wedding last weekend.  We only missed one day of harvesting cucumbers.  That night and the following day our neighborhood got 7" of rain.  Our rain monitor was overflowing.  That was all it took for the little baby cucumbers we had left on the vine to grow into monsters.  They were enormous!  Far too big to fit into canning jars, no matter how I sliced them.  What to do?  Make relish!

Here's my favorite relish recipe: Sweet and Snappy Zucchini Relish 
I simply substituted an equal amount of cucumbers for the zucchini called for in the recipe.

To get the best results:
  • drain the salty mixture in a colander
  • rinse the bowl it was in and put the drained veggies back in the bowl
  • fill the bowl with cold water and swish it around
  • drain it in the colander
  • taste the water draining out - if it's very salty, repeat the rinsing and draining several times if necessary.
Then squeeze out excess liquid.  Dump it in a large kitchen towel (that you don't mind getting stained) and squeeze it firmly several times over the sink.  You will be amazed at how much additional liquid comes out!  You don't want to squeeze it dry.

I made a triple batch, but only got 7 half pints because I squeezed out way more moisture than I ever did before.  I'm a little worried it will be too thick. We'll see.

All that work, so satisfying to see those cute little jars.  Then it was time for us to harvest.  There are 5 pounds of new cucumbers, but these at least will fit into the jars.  I have plans for them: Dill Relish (my darling daughter's favorite), Garlic Dill Pickles, and Bread and Butter Pickles.  When those are done there are tomatoes and zucchini and yellow squash and eggplant and green beans - oh, my!

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