What was I thinking?

Today, for the first time, I went to the celebrated international farmers market in my area. When I say in my area, I mean that generally, as it took me about 40 minutes to get there, which is why I haven’t been before. There were a lot of cool things about it. For one, they juice fresh young coconut for you right on the spot and I got some coconut water to make coconut kefir. I was also able to get organic pork fat to render, which is impossible to find locally (usually I have to go in with a coop or direct with a farmer). I bought duck fat for cooking veggies (it’s a foodie’s choice, I hear) and organic chicken feet for making stock.

You see, I started the GAPS diet intro today, which is a very strict gut-healing diet and basically consists of a few days of nothing but broth, squash and boiled meats before you start adding foods back in one at a time. One of the first things to be re-introduced (and which is supposed to be eaten several times a day) is fermented veggies. I don’t fancy having sauerkraut that often so I decided to go with my old favorite, pickled cucumbers.

I found the pickling cukes toward the very end of my two-hour tour around the store with six (fairly well behaved, considering) children, and as I started to load up one plastic bag with them, planning to get many more (as I can no longer find pickling cucumbers at my regular grocery store, and honestly, I’ve never had enough pickles, pregnant or not – and it’s not, btw), I looked up and saw a sign that said: “Box of cucumbers: $28.50.” I thought, “Hey, that would save me bagging and bagging all those cukes. Let me get it.” I figured it was like 30 pounds and I don’t really know how many 30 pounds was, but it couldn’t be MUCH more than I was planning to get – I mean there’s maybe 3-4 cukes per pound, right?

The box came out on a dolly and the guy loaded it on the bottom of my cart. I got my last couple things and went on my way. Had to wait until hubby got home to bring it in from the car, because it was heavy. The box said 1 1/9 bushels and I think it’s closer to 50 lbs, but what do I know.

I knew I had to get it going right away while they were fresh, so after dinner and cleanup, and an unsuccessful bedtime attempt, I started frantically finding and washing jars for the pickles.

My late night pickle brigade

One by one four of the kids escaped from their beds to help me (and it actually was helpful!). Christina was the runner bringing cukes from the box, Soren scrubbed them in vinegar water, and Jireh sliced them and put them in the jars.

Estella managed quality control.

We went and went until we ran out of jars. This is what we ended up with:

The big ones are half gallon jars, the smaller ones are quarts.

And this is what we have left to do:

Hardly a dent.

Um, yeah, anyone have an old fashioned barrel I can borrow? :/

This entry was posted in Cooking, Life learning, Real Food, The Joke's On You. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to What was I thinking?

  1. bwa ha ha! It’s good you like pickles so much.

  2. Karen says:

    Wow! Made me laugh to see the huge crate. 🙂
    Right now I have 2.5 bushels of apples waiting for me to sauce, so I can (sort of) relate.

  3. what kind of pickles did you make? Dill? (they don’t look like sweet bread and butter at least. And wow- talk about a LOT of pickles/cukes!!

    • Sarah says:

      I guess you’d call them “sour” pickles. they are lactofermented on the counter rather than heat processed. I use mustard seed, dill seed and salt water (and a bit of beet kvass or other lactobacilli starter). My family and I like them, but it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. 🙂

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