We eat a jar of pickles every couple of weeks so I thought that this would be a great plant to grow. It also easily grows vertically so it is great for small spaces. I have one gherkin growing in a grow bag and another in a wooden crate. Both are sprawling up a few sunflowers. I had read that the sunflowers make the gherkins and cucumbers sweeter and make good stong supports for them to grow up into.
I have a very old book that specifies that one gherkin plant is sufficient to supply a household with gherkins for the season. I grew one from seed and then accidentally bought another, thinking that it was a courgette plant. I can say that just a few weeks into the season I have quite a few so far so I did some research & started experimenting to see how I can keep them for supplies throughout the year.
This is my pickle recipe. This amount makes 2 average sized jars full of pickles (due to my tiny kitchen and small pots I am unable to make large batches but of course you can double or tripple as needed.
Fill the jars with gherkins or cucumbers – this way you know you have enough.
Take them out of the jar, wash them, and top and tail them. The blossoms can cause your batch to go bad.
Place the empty jars in boiling hot water & the lids too. Boil them about 5 minute to sterilize them.
Your gherkins or cucumbers
1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon whole pepper (I used red ones)
1 bay leaf shredded
¼ of a cinnamon stick crushed
6 cloves of garlic
2 whole cloves
A few sprigs of dill
This is heated in a pan – bring to the boil
1 table spoon of salt
1 cup of white vinegar
1 cup of water
2 teaspoons of honey/sugar
Taste this liquid, make sure you like it. You may need more salt or sugar (personal tastes differ)
Pour the hot liquid into the jars and seal them. Then place the whole jars in boiling hot water, making sure that they are entirely covered.
Boil for 45 minutes.
Now you have pickles. Waiting the 2 weeks and try them out is the most difficult bit.
If you think your pickle recipe is better than mine, please send me an email and let me know. I'd love to try yours too.