Sooooo, I didn't use the crock that I was so excited about tonight, but I did finally stop talking and started pickling. When I opened the fridge, the cukes were practically jumping into my arms there were so many. I took action, made a makeshift canner from internet instructions since mine(and the specialty canning eye I ordered for our stove)has gone AWOL and started the preparations. S was nice enough to taste a slice of each cuke to make sure they were tasty. I peeled and chopped two heads of garlic and had them ready. We boiled the first batch of brine and spices and let it cool slightly. S and I stuffed the jars with slices and then she abandoned me for a trivial reason like, uh, dinner. Whatever. :0) G took over and ladeled the brine over each jar full and then put the rings on after I pulled the seals out of the boiling water and put them on the jar. She then mixed up more brine to cook as I put the jars in the pot to process. It was quite the operation. The hub walked in from getting dinner to exclaim, "Well my sinuses are clear!". I couldn't be insulted...it was so very true, but just wait until I make some hot pepper jelly. Better than Afrin, my friends. I am just praying that these work, because I may have to make another batch after surveying the amount of blossoms still on the cucumber vines in the garden. Botulism is not something I want to share with my family. I'll never forget when a friend and I went through the "trash" from a mega rich family in our neighorhood who left a bunch of stuff at the curb when they moved. In it I found an antique brass neckerchief slide for my dad for his Scoutmaster uniform, which really turned out to be a beautiful and valuable thing. I also found some nice and pretty jars with pretty looking peaches and green beans with what must have been, in my 7 year old mind, some blue and green spices to add flavor. And DEATH as my mother pointed out when I set them on the kitchen counter next to the uncooked meatloaf. "Get that out of here and in the trash...and then wash your hands!!!". So hopefully I will have made only pickles tonight and not homemade dill flavored Botulism wrinkle remover in a Ball jar. Yes, I have canned many things before, but never pickles. I won't ask any of my readers to try the first one.
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