Can i make pickles with big slicing cucumbers?

cateyanne(zone 5/6 Northern Ohio)July 19, 2007

I was always afraid to can pickles at home. so when I planted cucumbers this year I just planted a regular slicing variety. now I've got cukes coming out my ears. I figure I can grind them up to make relish but can these type be used for a pickle? Has anyone had success with slicing cukes as pickles? If not what is a good kind for me to have next year? I've been reading the posts and am dying to try Linda Lou's sweet pickles. What about purchasing some from the local farmers markets? I suppose I could ask them to put aside fresh picked ones for me, if they do such a thing. How many should I start out with? what would the yield be?

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ristau5741(6)

as long as a cucumber is not yellow or orange, you can make pickes with any type of cucumber, the consistency of the pickle may vary depending on the size. pick 'em small.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2007 at 12:53PM
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cateyanne(zone 5/6 Northern Ohio)

I cut open some of my cukes and even though they are huge, the seed cavity is very small and so are the seeds. they were so long I cut them in half crosswise and then made spears and each spear looked very much like the ones I would buy if I were to buy a jar of dill spears, the seeds were probably even smaller. Is the seed cavity and size of the seeds the reason people typically don't use large cukes for pickling? If so these should be just fine, or am I wrong? I'll try to pick them small but when I have checked them before the smaller ones don't look "filled out" enough, like they are not ready to be harvested yet? Since Linda Lou's sweet pickles are kept whole throughout the soaking period would large slicing cukes not work for her recipe? Any advice appreciated.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2007 at 1:23PM
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dgkritch(Z8 OR)

Is it possible you are growing English cukes?
Like the ones that you buy individually wrapped in the grocery store?

These get really long, but have relatively small seed cavity and thinner skins than regular slicers (supposed to be "burpless" too).

How long are your cukes? Diameter?

That may explain what you're seeing. If your cukes are less than about 1 1/2 inches in diameter, I think you could still use them for Sweet Chunks.

The seeds AND the thicker skin seems to be the reason most people don't make pickles from the slicers. I think the meat texture is a little softer too. They have more water.

NONE of which has to stop you from making pickles.
Seeds can be removed, cukes can be peeled and the pickles may not be quite the same texture.

But they are safe, will more than likely taste good, and give much satisfaction when served!! :+)

Pickles are easy as long as you follow an approved recipe (Linda Lou's is fine).
All that vinegar doesn't allow for much BAD stuff to grow!
Enjoy!

Deanna

    Bookmark   July 19, 2007 at 3:29PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Not very tasty, and texture will be very soft in a very short time. Because they have much bigger seeds, these tend to make the pickles have a texture not usually found in a pickling cuke. Many of the bigger slicers also have a wax coating that will not work well if pickled. Suffice to say, about the only cuke worth eating and canning is the pickling tuypes. I much prefer them in salads too. Haven't had a regular cuke since I was at a resturant a few years ago, and it was sliced into a salad..

    Bookmark   July 19, 2007 at 3:30PM
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kayskats

Below is the Q&A from National Center for Home Food Preservations...

"Can I use burpless cucumbers for pickling?
Burpless cucumbers are not recommended for use in fermented pickles. This is because at their normal mature size, they produce a softening enzyme that causes the pickles to soften during fermentation. However, if smaller burpless cucumbers (those with small seeds) are used, they may be suitable for making fresh pack pickles. The skins on burpless cucumbers may be tough"

pick 'em before they mature and you should have no probelems with relishes or Linda Lou's Sweet Chunks.

I make a couple of freezer pickles and do NOT like them for that use -- just too soft.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2007 at 3:56PM
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ccaggiano

I made a bunch of pickles from big cucumbers and they are gross. They got very mushy in less than a week. And I agree with ksrogers, pickling cuc's are so much better than regular!! I had one the other night and was surprised at how much better I like it than bigger cuc's. Next year, I am only planting the little ones.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2008 at 10:27PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Off season, if I want cukes, I always look for the pickers in stores. You would be surprised at how many people turn up their noses to the picklers, and buy those dark green greasy skinned ones. I used to also by the long English ones, but they are still lacking the character of a pickler cuke. I know someone who peeled the picklers. Thats where most of teh goodness is. Now, they realize what they were missing all this time. I would think a freezer pickle would be mush. Some people don't mind mushy canned items. I prefer the firmness of the vegetables, and will go out of my way to make something that isn't exposed to a lot of heat, as thats the first thing that can cause a jar of mush. Non burpless cukes will not cause burps after they are fermented or pickled in a vinegar brine. I grow maybe 4 differnent types of picklers. They all look similar, but some mature much earlier than others.
You can see a 2 inch cuke today, and tomorrow its grown to 4 inches long. Suitable for picking. If you let it go another day, it gets even longer, but also bigger around. Once the 4-5 day occurs, the rest of the cukes on that same plant will slow down and stop growing. While I was in the hospital, my cuke plants all died, and had a few big huge yellow monsters that were just squished under the wheels of my tractor.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2008 at 11:24AM
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mwilkie(6a)

I make bread & butter pickles with the slicing cukes I grow in my garden. I don't have a problem with them at all. If you grow cukes, it's hard to figure out what to do with them all. Mine go crazy. They tend to hide and when you find them they are huge! Today I found one hiding that was 11-1/2 inches long.

Here is a link that might be useful: Batch of Bread & Butter Pickles

    Bookmark   August 9, 2013 at 3:42PM
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