Half- Sours (Brining Pickles)

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pnwchef
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2013/07/21 09:41:02 (permalink)

Half- Sours (Brining Pickles)

I had a few minutes while my coffee was brewing this morning, so I decided to make some Half-Sours. We had these at Katz's deli in NYC a few weeks ago, Mollie loved them. I should have figured she would, she takes pickle sandwiches for school lunch. I have a nice crop of pickling cukes coming out of the garden, I am picking them early so I can get some gherkins, This is the process, I'll be back in a few days for a taste test and a Reuben sandwich........
 
All I had in the house at 5AM this morning was dried dill, Garlic, hot pepper, I need to get some pickling spices, mustard seed and so on.
 



 
If anyone has made Half- Sours or have some better ways of doing this please let me know.............thx...pnwc
#1

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    chefbuba
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/21 10:57:36 (permalink)
    I was thinking of making pickles this weekend too, our local market has some nice cukes & fresh dill right now.....maybe today.
    #2
    Twinwillow
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/21 12:11:26 (permalink)
    pnwchef, what is the liquid in the jar? Water? They look great!
     
    My mom used to make garlic pickles using cukes from her little garden.
    She used the smaller pickling cucumbers. Her home made pickles were fantastic! But she's gone now and never left a written recipe.
     
    I'd love to make some pickles using the smaller "Japanese" cucumbers available at Asian markets.
    #3
    pnwchef
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/21 13:23:43 (permalink)
    Twinwillow

    pnwchef, what is the liquid in the jar? Water? They look great!

    My mom used to make garlic pickles using cukes from her little garden.
    She used the smaller pickling cucumbers. Her home made pickles were fantastic! But she's gone now and never left a written recipe.

    I'd love to make some pickles using the smaller "Japanese" cucumbers available at Asian markets.

    The liquid is salt and water for this method of brining vegetables. I will leave these on the counter for about 3 days and let the fermentation process do its job. After that I will put them in the fridge so we can enjoy them all summer. I will make these every week to keep family and friends with enough to keep them happy.
      The other process we do is by using a vinegar base solution along with spices, garlic and hot peppers then put in a water bath to seal canning jars.....let me know if you would like the canning recipe, or if you remember what your Mom did, we maybe able to come close to hers...................take care...............Bill
    #4
    mar52
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/21 15:15:34 (permalink)
    Bil, those look PERFECT!
     
    My favorite!
     
    (We don't use garlic)
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    agnesrob
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/22 21:12:58 (permalink)
    Those look so good!! My kids eat our cukes pretty fast but I have made pickles in past years.
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    Twinwillow
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/22 21:30:49 (permalink)
    Thanks, pnwchef. But I'm not sure if I have the patience anymore to undertake that project.
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    pnwchef
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/23 10:30:00 (permalink)
    mar52

    Bil, those look PERFECT!

    My favorite!

    (We don't use garlic)


    Mar, what is this "we" stuff, I'm Jewish by Deli..........meytav ha-ikhulim
     
    Agnes, I planted enough pickling cukes so I could preserve about two years worth of pickles . That way I don't need to do it again next year.........
     
    Twin, You tell me what she did, I'll make it and send you a jar..........The picture of the cukes I show above are small gherkins, they just look bigger in the picture....
    #8
    Twinwillow
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/23 11:34:25 (permalink)
    pnwchef ~ Bill, you're so nice! I haven't a clue as to how she made them.
    I would love the recipe, however.
     
    Many thanks........Michael. 
     
    #9
    mar52
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/23 20:43:19 (permalink)
    meytav ha-ikhulim? 
     
    Bill, I had to look that up.  I still don't know what it means.
     
    "We" was Mommy and Me.  I only made them once and wasn't happy with the result.  Mom hasn't made them in years... since her doctor said, "No more salt".
     
    (Didn't stop her when he said, "No more beef".)
    #10
    pnwchef
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/23 21:43:00 (permalink)
    meytav ha-ikhulim = Best wishes...............Mar, if people had to give up salt now a days, they would have to shop at the farmers mkt. I knew who we ,were. I knew Sharon could care less if there was Garlic in the pickles.................Bill
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    love2bake
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/24 00:43:43 (permalink)
    Mmmmm!!!  That looks amazing--I so love half sours (and sours, for that matter). So it's just a three-day process then you store them?  That sounds very doable.
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    pnwchef
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/24 11:47:44 (permalink)
    L2B, this is the picture from 3 days ago when I started the process.
     

     
    This is 72 hrs later, as you can see, it's doing it's job very nicely.
     

     
    I'm going to try these this afternoon, I think I'm going to go 5 days but we will see. I plan on doing this all summer or as long as the cukes are on the vine. I need to get some mustard seeds, pickling spice, pepper corns and what ever else I come up with to see how they work in this process. This is a basic garlic, dill and hot pepper blend. I think some multicolored seeds and peppers may be fun to try.........I'll let you know how the pickle is......................pnwc
    #13
    Tony Bad
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/24 15:33:56 (permalink)
    This recipe has been kicking around roadfood for a number of years. It was originally posted by member Grampy (Thanks Grampy...hope you don't mind me spreading your great advice!) 

    For real pickles, take 20 small kirby cukes (uwaxed and bumpy) and scrub under cold water. Bring 3/4 cup kosher salt in cold water to a boil, turn off heat, and let cool. This is your brine. Meanwile, smack about 16 garlic cloves with the back of a large knife. Distribute equally into canning jars with cukes. Divide 1 bunch of dill, 6 or so bay leaves, and 4 small hot peppers into jars. Divide 3 TBS pickling spices (mustard seeds, perppercorns, coriander seeds, and dill seeds) into jars. Add brine to totally cover. Put lids on tight and shake. Set in a cool, dark place. Remove the lids once a day and spoon off any foam that might form. Cover and shake. You will have half sour after about 4-5 days, and sour after about a week. Refrigerate -- if any are left. This is what they do at the Second Ave Deli in NYC. Rob 

    I made it many times and many ask when I am making more. I prefer the 4 day, half sours as the pickles are still nice and crunchy. I used 4 old pickle jars for this amount of cukes and spices and such. 

    I used cukes from my garden, which had gotten too big, so I made wedges and some thick slices as well. 

    It was so easy and it genuinely produces deli quality pickles 
    #14
    pnwchef
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/24 16:30:10 (permalink)
    Tony, thx for posting this. It also makes me wonder why more people don't do this at home anymore, it almost a lost art. Rule of thunb is 1 tblsp of canning salt, Kosher salt per cup ??? is this about what you do. I put a cup on top of the cukes to weigh them down. If this process is done right, bubbles will form and work their way to the top, I like venting them out, not sealing the jar. The other thing I would question is, I would wash, make sure there is no dirt on the cukes, I wouldn't scrub. The outside of the cukes react with the brine and break down during the fermentation process. I would make sure, dill is rinsed and the jars are clean. Kirby Cukes are Gherkins or small young cukes...................thx again..............
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    Twinwillow
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/24 17:03:13 (permalink)
    My biggest problem is a genuine lack of patience to follow all the steps plus the time involved. But, it sounds like a blue ribbon winning recipe.
     
    I'm happy to buy the few brands of pickles I really enjoy from the market.
    post edited by Twinwillow - 2013/07/24 17:07:28
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    Tony Bad
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/24 21:24:12 (permalink)
    It really doesn't take very long and is so worth it.  I do scrub the cukes with a brush, never thought of the reaction of skin to brine.  I don't really measure salt/water mix very carefully. I use the recommended 3/4 cup in a large pot...probably a gallon. I fill the jars as much as possible so lid keeps everything under water. I do open the jars every day to vent them but otherwise leave lids on. They do build a bit of pressure from fermentation, but not too much
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    Twinwillow
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/24 21:39:22 (permalink)
    I'm a pretty damn good cook but, I won't bake either because I never measure any ingredients.
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    pnwchef
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/25 12:04:59 (permalink)
    Tony Bad

    It really doesn't take very long and is so worth it.  I do scrub the cukes with a brush, never thought of the reaction of skin to brine.  I don't really measure salt/water mix very carefully. I use the recommended 3/4 cup in a large pot...probably a gallon. I fill the jars as much as possible so lid keeps everything under water. I do open the jars every day to vent them but otherwise leave lids on. They do build a bit of pressure from fermentation, but not too much

    Tony, I did a taste test on mine after 3 days, they were salty IMHO, my wife said the salt was OK. I thought they needed to be more sour and pick up some heat from the peppers. I'm going to let them go until they are right..........................I made a batch this morning using 1/3 cup salt to 2 qts of boiling water, if I could make these with less salt that would be just fine with me, I used larger cukes and poked them with a fork so the brine penetrates into the cuke..........................As you know there are 100's of recipes for half- Sours, I see some of these recipes not boiling the water and salt. This isn't a real god idea, some cities treat their water with chlorine, this would kill the bacteria that we are trying to create during fermentation. I think your recipe is a good one for people to follow, it's a easy process to follow. If you think they come real close to being the real deal, who would know better than you.......it's getting close to pastrami time here...................pnwc
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    Tony Bad
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/25 15:53:50 (permalink)
    pnwchef
    Tony, I did a taste test on mine after 3 days, they were salty IMHO, my wife said the salt was OK. I thought they needed to be more sour and pick up some heat from the peppers. I'm going to let them go until they are right..........................I made a batch this morning using 1/3 cup salt to 2 qts of boiling water, if I could make these with less salt that would be just fine with me, I used larger cukes and poked them with a fork so the brine penetrates into the cuke..........................As you know there are 100's of recipes for half- Sours, I see some of these recipes not boiling the water and salt. This isn't a real god idea, some cities treat their water with chlorine, this would kill the bacteria that we are trying to create during fermentation. I think your recipe is a good one for people to follow, it's a easy process to follow. If you think they come real close to being the real deal, who would know better than you.......it's getting close to pastrami time here...................pnwc

     
    The person who originally posted said this was a recipe scaled down from what they did at the second ave deli in NY. Not sure if the poster or a friend of his worked there, but the taste is very close! I will have to try some of the things you have done and see how it comes out.
     
    Here is a pic of my pickle factory from a year or two back...
     

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    chefbuba
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    Re:Half- Sours (Brining Pickles) 2013/07/25 18:05:27 (permalink)
    I just bought #25lbs of cukes from the farm stand, I think I have the pickle bug too.
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