Help me use my dill seeds

auntwendy9May 25, 2009

Hello all,

I have a huge volunteer dill that is giving me millions of seeds. I'm harvesting them while green and placing in a paper bag. I thought I might try my hand at canning some dill pickles. I have made some jellies before so I am not a total novice to canning, but am still what I would consider a beginner. I'm reading every thread I find on this site about pickling and getting lots of good information but it's a little overwhelming!

My first question is, if I don't grow them myself where can I get pickling cucumbers? Would they have these at my local farmers market? (I am lucky to have access to the huge Dallas one).

Other than saving for growing next year, what other ways can I use these gajillion dill seeds? There are so many of them!

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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Check the HARVEST forum! I actively post there and have posted many recipes and help for dill pickles, both vinegar based and half sour salt brine (fermented) types. I also use packaged dill pickle mixes made by Mrs. Wages, as they also contain a lot of dill flavor. The seeds, in their swelled green stages should be left on the stems as 'sprays'. The whole seed head as well as some of the dill weed leaves get packed into jars of pickling cukes. Not sure how fresh your sources for pickling cukes are, unless you buy from places that have just picked them that day. Usually you can tell, as they have no sunken areas and are very firm and crisp, compared to rubbery, which are old. I never use the big dark green cukes as they are just a waste of money. Right now, my dill that fell from last year, that survived our winter is about 6 inches tall. I calculate that they should be about 2-3 feet tall by the time pickling cukes start arrive. I have not even planted any cuke seeds yet, but did add some additional dill seeds for some later plants that wll mature a bit later. Allow the swelled green dill seeds to mature to the tan stage before you remove them for storage. They get removed and packed in a Ball canning jar. I also harvest a lot of the dill weed and dry it in a dehyradtor, then crumble it, and also plac it in a Ball canning jar. I use a Food Saver attachment to pull a vacuum on the jar. The attachment holds a lid inside and when the air is pulled out, and you pull the vacuum line, it blasts a 'slug' of air back in, sealing the lid very tight. I have two year old dill weed still full flavored and very green looking. If it were not under vacuum during storage, it would turn a dull tan color and lose all its flavor and smell. I take out a small amount, and reseal the rest. I also do this with basil and rosemary. Dill is great with tomato sauces, as well as in potato salad and pasta salad. I even add dill weed to tuna fish.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2009 at 2:02PM
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Most supermarkets sell pickling cukes but to expensive.
In my area there a lot of Asian market that sell them a lot cheeper. In vegetable section, somtimes hey have a mound of them, for 6o, 70 cents per pound or less.

You can chop you fresh dills and freeze them. They stay fresh. You can also dry them. But then it will lose some of aroma and flavor.

You can also add some dill seeds (also coriander, pepper corns, bayleave, anise seed, turmeric if like them little yellow).
You can also grind dill seeds and use in cooking. Or grind together with coriander, anise seed, pepper corns (preferably whit or red),star anise, add some turmeric to make your own curry seasoning.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2009 at 7:00PM
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Boil some new potatoes, and while still warm pour over some French dressing and sprinkle on some dill seeds. Serve warm or cold.

Add some seeds to breads (use like sesame or poppyseeds in the mixture, or on top); in teas, butters, cakes, breads, scones (try a dill and cheese scone!), soups, with fish, in pickles, in salads.

Try sprinkling some dill seeds in you next batch of cooked cabbage instead of caraway seeds. Don't be too generous - the flavour can be strong!

Broccoli with Dill
500g broccoli, cooked in boiling water until tender
2 teaspoons dill seed
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup sour cream
1 cup breadcrumbs
dill leaves for garnish

Place broccoli in an ovenproof dish. Sprinkle with dill seed, season. Pour sour cream over, top with breadcrumbs. Bake at 180C until are browned. Serve garnished with dill leaves. Cauliflower may be substituted for the broccoli.

Baked Cucumbers
4 cucumbers, peeled and quartered, lengthwise
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon crushed dill seed
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon salt

Place a layer of cucumbers in the bottom of an 20x20x5cm baking dish. Dot with half the butter. Mix together the dill, pepper and salt. Sprinkle half over the cucumbers. Add a second layer of cucumbers, dot with butter, and sprinkle with remaining seasonings. Bake uncovered at 200°C for 1 hour or until done. Stir cucumbers lightly once, pushing the top layers to the bottom and lifting the bottom cucumbers to the top. Serve hot. Mixed herbs may be used instead of dill seed.

Dill Bread
1 packet yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1 cup creamed cottage cheese
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon minced onion
1 tablespoon butter
2 teaspoons dill seed
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 egg, well-beaten
2 1/4-2 1/2 cups flour

Soften yeast in warm water. Combine warm water, cottage cheese, sugar, onion, butter, dill seed, salt, bicarbonate of soda and egg; mix well. Fold flour into other ingredients to form a stiff dough; cover and let rise till about double in bulk. Stir down dough and turn it into a bread pan. Allow to rise till double in bulk again. Bake at 180°C for 30-40 minutes or until done.

Or add some dill seeds to your favourite Beer Bread recipe.

Sicilian Turkey Sausages
5 kg minced turkey meat
3½ teaspoons of whole dill seeds
3½ teaspoons of powdered fennel seed
1½ teaspoons of chilli powder
3½ teaspoons of salt
3½ teaspoons of black pepper
3½ teaspoons of diced and crushed garlic

Mix all ingredients and refrigerate for 24 hours. Stuff into pig sausage skins and twist as desired.

Baked Onions with Dill:

Use dill seeds to season vegetables like carrots and pumpkin while cooking. Or stir them with butter into the veges after cooking.

You may prefer to grind your seeds to a powder before adding them to baked goods. It makes a good salt substitute.

In fact, you can substitute dill seeds in just about any recipe calling for caraway or fennel seeds.

To make Dill Tea (otherwise known as Gripe Water, often given to babies for colic - one teaspoonful per dose) Often used by nursing mothers to stimulate milk supply (and babies get the benefit of it by not getting colicky!):

Pour a cup of boiling water onto 1-2 teaspoonfuls of the gently crushed seeds and infuse for 10-15 minutes. Strain out the seeds. For the treatment of flatulence, take a cup before meals.

If you don't like any of those ideas, these might appeal.

Hang seed-heads in the home, over doorways, and above cradles provide protection. Add dill to your bath to make you irresistible to your lover.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2009 at 4:02AM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

Quick pickles can be made from a whole variety of vegetables. Check out Japanese quick pickle or tsukemono recipes for ideas. Essentially pickles are made out of whatever is in season.

While dill isn't a seasoning usually added to these style of pickle, you can experiment. The fun part about these is that you can whip up a tiny batch in a few minutes and so experimentation is very easy.


    Bookmark   May 26, 2009 at 8:13AM
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Wow, this is all so very helpful!!! Thank you all SOOO much, I really appreciate all the ideas and recipes!! I love how everyone is so friendly and helpful around here!

    Bookmark   May 26, 2009 at 9:44AM
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