Old recipe for bread and butter pickles.help

duce3, Jan 6, 9:02am
I have my Grandmothers pickle recipes but one calls for 4 quarts of small cucumbers.Anyone know how many that would be or weigh!
Also, it calls for alum for the brine and I can't find it anywhere.

cgvl, Jan 6, 9:05am
a quart is equal to 2 pints or 1.2lt. 4 quarts ia a gallon/8 pints or 4.5lts.
Not sure if you can get alum these days . used to be available at chemists only.

shop-a-holic, Jan 6, 9:07am
4 quarts = gallon
1 gallon = approx 4 litres (petrol gallon 4.5 litres)
So you're looking at approx 4 kgs small cucumbers.

shop-a-holic, Jan 6, 9:08am
sorry cgvl.you beat me to it, and I didn;t see your post whilst typing.

cgvl, Jan 6, 9:13am
shop a holic no worries I do it too.
Duce I would just do a standard brine, presume you will wash the pickles before bottling so not too salty. Oh and the small cucumbers are gherkin size too, I have a recipe for them too but as Dh doesn't like gherkins I don't make it.

duce3, Jan 6, 9:14am
thank you both.I tried two chemists, a health food shop and two spice bulk shops and most didn't know what it was.
I have to get all ready because when I looked at the plants today they are covered in almost up to size cukes.

shop-a-holic, Jan 6, 9:14am
Alum = Potassum Aluminium Sulphate.
As pickling is a brining method by submerging items under liquid for a time (you'll may need to use a plate or something in the pot to completely keep the cucumbers under - they will float).

shop-a-holic, Jan 6, 9:19am
Alum was used to keep the pickles crisp.It was also an ingredient in baking powder; but it is a dangerous product and not used anymore.

Stolen from wiki:If you make your own pickles keep in mind there are alternatives to alum. Calcium salts or food-grade lime can be used to keep pickles crisp. However, if you want to not use any chemicals at all, you can simply soak the cucumbers in ice water for several hours before pickling. The cold water also works well to keep the pickles crisp.

duce3, Jan 6, 9:20am
Spelled out like that makes it seem like something I would look for at a fertilizer supplier LOL
Do you have to refrigerate them while they are in the brine!

shop-a-holic, Jan 6, 9:33am
Personally, I would, and you have nothing to lose by doing so.
I cure and brine alot of product; I have even used Potassium Nitrate in my past; but have found much safer chemicals to play with.
I know, doll.I would not like this to get out to the wider community (wink).

duce3, Jan 6, 9:58am
I will let you know how they turn out.I suppose they should be left to set for awhile but I am going to do a small jar to taste test after a couple days.
Can't wait.

pickles7, Jan 6, 10:13am
Must be old to mention Alum. Just use sea salt to make a brine with. You tube has heaps of recipes, you can watch them being pickled.

davidt4, Jan 6, 10:30pm
Here is a recipe for delicious bread & butter pickles which doesn't need alum or any other additives.It was originally from the Cordon Bleu book of preserving.It keeps well for years.

Bread & Butter Pickle

9 small pots

1.4 kg peeled and sliced cucumbers
450 g brown onion, finely sliced
2 red capsicums, cored and finely sliced
40g salt
285 g white or raw sugar
40g yellow mustard seed
1 tsp celery seed
1 tsp tumeric powder
½ tsp ground mace
600 ml cider or white wine vinegar

Layer veges with salt, cover and stand 2 - 3 hours.Drain, rinse in cold water and drain again.Meanwhile put rest of ingredients in a preserving pan and boil 2 min.Add drained veges and bring up to a boil, stirring frequently.As soon as it reaches a full boil pot in small jars and cover.

switchie, Jan 7, 8:30am
that is a great recipe davidt4I used it for years when my kids were at home.dont pickle anymore these days though.

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