If you have cucumbers in your garden or purchase them at a farmers market you want the cucumbers to be able to fit in large quart size jar. Really the smaller the better to pack.
Depending on how many jars you have, you can double your recipe (which is what I do) However, this recipe is for about 4 qt jars.
Cucumbers 3-5 pounds
1/2 cup of 5% vinegar
1/4 cup pickling salt
4 cups of water
1 teaspoon Alum (this makes the pickles nice and crunchy)
1 tablespoon of pickling spice (I put 1 1/2 tablespoon cause I like the flavor but thats up to you)
Fresh garlic (depending on how much you like in your pickles) my husband and family fight over these so I put about 6 cloves (peeled of course)
Shallots (once again depending on how many you want in there that's up to you. I grow these so the are small but I like to cut them into half)
Fresh Dill (We grow our dill)
Preheat over to 325.
Boil all of the above except for the pickling spice. Prepare your jars by cleaning and wiping dry. The lids and seals you will put in a pot of water until it boils then remove and dry each rim and seal.
Pack a hand full of dill around the edge of the jar then place in the bottom of the jar your onions and garlic. You want to start with the largest cucumber and place it on the sides and pack them on the sides until you can't pack them in anymore. Use the small ones for filling in the holes and you will have to use alot of force to pack these in cause you don't want alot of room so it will be hard to do. You will begin to think you are going to break the jar but trust me you won't. Once packed, top with the pickling spice and pour the hot solution over the top. You want the water solution to reach the first rim. DO NOT FILL TO THE TOP. Place in the oven carefully not to spill for 20-25 minutes until the cucumbers turn a bright green color. Remove from oven and place on a cooling rack. Wipe the rim with a wet paper towel to make sure none of the solution or spice has spilt over. Take your lid and rim and place it on the jar. The jar's will be hot so hold it with a pot holder and be careful not to spill any of the solution. You don't want to over tighten the lid. When the jar's start to cool you will hear them pop; which means at that point and time you can tighten the jars tighter.
This recipe is one that has been in the Novak's family for generations. I've added a 1/2 tsp more of pickling spice but I'll have to get permission to post the recipe before I do.
In the meantime, here is just a fraction of what I put up because they were spread out all over the counter.