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Vintage Recipes and Recollections


Autumn always brings to mind the rows of canned fruit and vegetables that lined the storage pantry in my grandparent’s basement.  Rhubarb, beets and lots of pickles.

I admit I haven’t tackled many canning or pickling projects – despite my love for all things pickled!  As a matter of fact my one and only sojourn into the world of pickle preservation was an unmitigated disaster. This recipe is an off-shoot of another of grandma’s signature recipes – Mustard Pickles, a true family favourite. Not long after grandma passed away, Mom and I decided to have an afternoon together and make those wonderful, tangy pickles.  Things went pretty well until I misread the amount of salt required and added about four times as much as necessary.  Needless to say the the pickles were ruined but Mom and I had a great day reminiscing.

As you can see the original recipe for Good Pickles has become almost unreadable, but over the years there’s been a number of “re-writes” and I’ve included the readable ingredients and reworked instructions here. As with a lot of recipes handed down through the generations, some of the instructions are just “known” and not always written down so I’ve included those as well!

Hope you enjoy these terrific pickles as much as we have over the years.

Good Pickles

Into a large stock pot add:

2 quarts chopped cucumber (seeded)

1 quart chopped green tomatoes

1 quart chopped yellow onion

2 quarts chopped cabbage

1/2 cup salt (pickling salt is a good choice)

1 quart white vinegar (about 4 cups)

Bring to a gentle boil for 5 minutes.

In a separate large bowl mix:

8 cups white sugar

2-3 teaspoons turmeric

1 cup flour

1/2 oz celery seed (approximately 3 teaspoons)

To the flour and sugar add enough of the boiled vinegar mixture to make a paste and then whisk the mixture back into the stock pot.


2 red and 2 green peppers seeded and chopped

Cook on a medium high heat until thickened – about 15 minutes.

Pour into hot sterilized jars filling to within 1/2 inch of the top. Seal with lids and rings. Process for 10 minutes in a simmering water bath. Refrigerate any jars that fail to seal properly.

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