How to Preserve Cucumbers From Your Own Garden?
Pickled cucumbers have long been a popular snack. More than 4,000 years ago, people began fermenting their cucumbers in brine. The fact itself has not changed until today, only the recipes have become more sophisticated. In Central and Eastern Europe, these delicacies are still enjoyed by many and preserving self-harvested vegetables has always been prevalent.
There are two ways of preserving cucumbers, you either put the vegetables in vinegar or brine. Vinegar creates an intense acidic taste, while the salt creates a weaker bite. If you decide to make this delicacy yourself, following is an easy recipe. Wash the cucumbers off and soak them in salted water overnight. The next day, add vinegar, sugar, salt and water to a pot and bring the mixture to a boil. Then place cucumbers into the mix for two minutes. Following that, place the cucumbers, raw onion rings and some spices in a clean jar. Spread the boiled marinate on top and close the jar immediately. Now, turn the jar upside down and let it stand in a dark place for two to three weeks. The addition of herbs to the marinade offers a wide range of flavours. It is best to experiment a little, so, you can quickly find out how the pickled cucumbers taste best.
Only Pickling Cucumbers are Suitable
That sounds easy, but not every type of cucumber is ideally suited for this and you have to make a distinction between pickling cucumbers and cucumbers. You can freshly harvest the latter and eat them. The pickling cucumber, on the other hand, is specially grown for the purpose of fermentation. In principle, these are cucumbers harvested young. Not only are they significantly smaller than regular cucumbers, but they also don’t have a smooth surface. The taste of these varieties is also less intense. They grow lying on the ground and are less prone to disease. Pickling cucumbers can also be grown outdoors, but the yield will be better in a greenhouse.
Those who water and fertilize their plants adequately can look forward to a rich harvest in August and September of the year. It is best to cut the cucumbers from the plant. You can tell whether it is ripe by the skin, which must be evenly green. At this time, you can harvest your cucumbers every two to three days. As soon as you have started that, the plant puts all its energy into new cucumbers, which grow back quickly. Many hobby gardeners swear that harvesting their cucumbers will make the vegetables regrow even faster afterwards. If you have harvested enough fruits, it is now time to preserve them.
As previously mentioned, you have the choice between vinegar and brine for preservation. The more vinegar you use when pickling the fruit, the more intense the acidity. The cucumbers can stay in the jar for around a year. However, once you open it, you have to put your jar in the refrigerator. You can keep the cucumbers there for about a week.