Last summer I made the recipe dill relish from the Ball Book. It was pretty delicious. The original recipe calls to shred the cucumbers with a food processor, though, and I ended up acting like a four year old about it all winter. (like this: RELISH IS SUPPOSED TO BE LITTLE TINY CUBES OF CUCUMBER. THE STUFF FROM THE GROCERY STORE IS IN CUBES, NOT SHREDDED. WHY ISN’T THIS LIKE THAT.) The other day, I decided that I really, really didn’t want to do any of the important stuff I was supposed to be working on, and that spending the afternoon chopping cucumbers into a 2 mm. dice would be a much more productive use of my time.I’m pleased to let you know that the work was totally worth it, and this relish is so awesome it makes me want to eat hot dogs every day. Chopping all these cukes wasn’t as awful as you’d think, either. If you’re the kind of crazy person who likes to prep giant piles of citrus fruit for marmalade (like me) then this is actually a wonderfully relaxing project. If you’re normal, you can definitely just use the food processor instead and it still tastes great. DILL RELISH, adapted from the recipe in the Ball Book of Home Preserving
Brunoise means to cut into a very small dice, between 2 and 4 mm. (It’s funny, because if you know happen to know what “brunoise” means, you’ll probably notice that I did a really lame job of actually doing it properly.) Don’t be scared by the fancy word though: the idea is just that you’re cutting the cucumber and onion into teeny pieces. If you don’t want to, just shred it.
Makes: 14 pints
Cook Time: ha! hours.
- 12 lbs. pickling cucumbers, brunoised
- 2 onions, brunoised
- 3/4 c. kosher salt
- 6 c. water
- 3 tsp. turmeric
- 1 tsp. celery seed
- 1/4 c. chopped dill fronds and blossoms
- 1/2 c. sugar
- 6 c. white vinegar
Combine the cucumbers, onions, water and salt in a nonreactive container. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Prepare boiling water canner, jars and lids.
Drain the cucumber mixture and then rinse it thoroughly with cold water. Transfer the drained mixture into a large, nonreactive pot. Add the vinegar, turmeric, celery seed, dill and sugar and bring to a boil. Turn heat to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Ladle the hot relish into hot, clean jars leaving 1/2″ headspace. Use a wooden chopstick to remove air bubbles and adjust headspace. Process for 15 minutes in a boiling water bath, adjusting for altitude as necessary.
PS: I didn’t remove the air bubbles as well as I should have, and ended up with a couple jars that have way too much headspace. Don’t skip this step!