Storing Pickles

Several tricks and tools will help you store pickled foods so that they stay fresh and crisp. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
Now that you’re eager to or have successfully made pickles from the recipes in my new cookbook, The Complete Guide to Pickling, where and how should you store them? I talk briefly about pickle storage in the book, but several more tricks and tools will help you keep your pickled foods fresh and crisp.

As I mentioned in my post about pickling hacks earlier this month, you need two basic tools to make and store pickles: a container and a way to cover it. To ensure your pickles and their container stay clean and fresh, inside and out, choose nonreactive containers and lids—in other words, ones made of glass, stainless steel, food-grade plastic, or silicone.

Sure, you can cap your pickles with old metal mayonnaise lids or reuse tin-plated canning lids and rings; I did this, and recommended this repurposing, for years. But both will rust and break down over time as the acid in the pickle brine eats away at them, leaving an unattractive sticky mess around the jar threads, on your refrigerator shelves, and even potentially on the underside of the lid, where it can flake down into the food. Instead, I now save those old lids for dry storage and have switched to nonreactive options for high-acid foods.
Read more about storing pickles

Canning Tools for Picklers

Some of my favorite tools make home-canning easier, safer, and more reliable. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
Start making pickles, and you may quickly run out of refrigerator space. But don’t let that slow you down. Instead, consider canning your pickles.

As I explain in the opening chapter of my new book, The Complete Guide to Pickling, space is the primary reason I process pickles. Many pickles taste better and stay crisper, and fermented ones keep their probiotic goodness, when you don’t subject them to a boiling water bath. But some pickles hold up well to high heat, including beets, snap beans, and (when handled properly) cucumbers. Other pickled foods are ideal for canning, including many of the chutneys, sauces, relishes, and sauces in my book.

If you already can jams, jellies, and fruit in a boiling water bath, you likely have everything you need in your kitchen to can pickles. But if you’re new to canning or have been using some tool hacks to process your jars, a few tools will make your home canning easier, safer, and more reliable.
Read more about canning tools for picklers

Pickling Tools & Hacks

Use tools already in your kitchen to make pickles. Read more about pickling tools and hacks. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
I’ve been hearing all week from people receiving their copies of The Complete Guide to Pickling. Now that it’s in your hands, I hope you’re excited to start making some tasty pickles. But where to begin, and what do you need?

In writing this book, I not only expanded my pickling repertoire but also tested a range of tools designed to make pickling easy and foolproof. I only had space to briefly describe some of those tools in the book, so this month I want to share some of my favorites and why you may want to add them to your pickling toolbox.

But let me be clear: you can make most of the pickles in The Complete Guide to Pickling using tools that are already in your kitchen or that you can pick up easily and cheaply. That’s how I first started pickling on my own, and I still reach for many of these tool hacks today. I recommend starting this way—you’ll quickly learn what should be at the top of your list for a tool upgrade.
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Fresh Pickles

Curried Green Tomatoes. Get the recipe in The Complete Guide to Pickling by Julie Laing.
Curried Green Tomatoes. Photograph by Andrew Purcell.

When most Americans think of pickles, they think of what I’ve gathered into the Fresh Pickle chapter in my new cookbook, The Complete Guide to Pickling: vegetables pickled in vinegar and either stored in the refrigerator or canned in a boiling water bath. The recipe list for that chapter includes some pickles that are likely old favorites (Kosher-Style Dill Pickles and Water Bath-Processed Beets) but also some fun, possibly new-to-you flavors (Curried Green Tomatoes and Szechuan-Spiced Cucumber Rounds).

But some of my new favorite fresh pickles fall in a later chapter of the book: Sweet and Fruity Pickles. I was surprised by how much I loved creating the pickle recipes in this chapter, because I generally turn up my nose at pickles labeled “sweet.” But that term is usually applied to pickled vegetables, like cucumbers and beets, that my brain doesn’t register as needing to be sweet. Fruit is a different story: whether I’m adding sugar or relying on the natural sugars within a fruit, my taste buds find that sweet and fruity pickles balance beautifully with the tang of vinegar or salt brine.
Read more about fresh pickles and learn to make Fresh Pears with Lemon