Lately, I have been quite busy…watering my garden. We are not getting a lot of rain this year, so I am out with the hose, making sure my hops are well hydrated. Since I water so much, the cucumbers have been going like mad. I have a son who loves raw cucumbers, but he can’t keep up. So, let’s try canning for the first time. Let’s try pickles for the first time. Let’s make sure we include homegrown hops and homebrew in the brine.
So I started to research to find a recipe that fulfilled a few things for me:
- Uses my homegrown cucumbers.
- Uses some homebrew
- Incorporates some homegrown hops
- Possibly incorporate some homegrown hot peppers.
I wasn’t sure if I could get all those parts in.
I did finally decide on a recipe. I found it here: Hoppy IPA Pickles
For the recipe, I used some of last year’s nugget hops crop, and some Pater Saazy Pils (must have missed documenting this one in February). I made three quick jars before heading out on vacation. The first batch had some hops in the brine and some hops added to the jar. I didn’t have any whole peppercorns or mustard seeds, so I used some ground of each.
The second batch I used Throw Mama From The Flame. Instead of using a sliced jalapeño this time, i used some homegrown chilies and then some locally grown Tabasco peppers in other jars. This time I threw in whole peppercorns and mustard seeds . I added more hops to give some character in the jars. This time I did slices and spears.
I think if my two plants keep giving me more cukes, this could get fun. I hope to dial in my recipe a bit. I am also going to seek out ways to make my pickles crisper, and do a sweet batch with homebrew as well.