Things Mother Used to Make: A Nostalgic Collection of Traditional Pickle Recipes

Preserving the bounty of the garden has been a time-honored tradition passed down through generations. These pickling recipes are a testament to the creativity and resourcefulness of mothers who found ways to capture the flavors of the harvest in jars. Whether you are looking to revisit childhood memories or create new ones, these traditional pickle recipes will bring a touch of nostalgia to your kitchen.

Pickled Cauliflower

Ingredients:

  • 1 cauliflower
  • 2 tablespoonfuls of salt
  • 1 quart of vinegar
  • 1 teaspoonful of whole cloves
  • 1 teaspoonful of white mustard seed

Instructions:

  1. Pull the cauliflower into pieces and place in cold water with salt.
  2. Gradually heat and boil for five minutes, then drain until dry.
  3. Place the cauliflower in a glass jar.
  4. Boil the cloves and mustard seed in the vinegar and pour over the cauliflower while hot.
  5. Ensure the cauliflower is covered with vinegar. Seal while hot.

Green Chopped Pickle, No. 1

Ingredients:

  • 1 peck of green tomatoes
  • 6 large onions
  • 4 green peppers
  • 2 red peppers
  • 2 pounds of brown sugar
  • 4 bunches of celery
  • 3 pints of vinegar
  • 2 tablespoonfuls of allspice
  • 2 tablespoonfuls of whole cloves
  • 2 sticks of cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. Put the tomatoes, onions, and peppers through a meat grinder or chop fine.
  2. Sprinkle with salt and let sit overnight.
  3. Drain off the brine the next day.
  4. Add vinegar, sugar, and spices.
  5. Mix well and put into glass jars. Do not cook.

Chow Chow, No. 1

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 peck green tomatoes
  • 1 large head of cabbage
  • 6 large onions
  • 1/2 pint grated horseradish
  • 1 cupful of salt
  • 1/2 pound of white mustard seed
  • 1/2 cupful of ground black pepper
  • 1/2 ounce of celery seed
  • 2 pounds of brown sugar
  • 3 quarts of vinegar

Instructions:

  1. Chop or grind tomatoes, cabbage, and onions very fine and salt overnight.
  2. Drain off the brine the next day.
  3. Add vinegar and other ingredients.
  4. Mix well and put into glass jars. Do not cook.

Chow Chow, No. 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 peck of green tomatoes
  • 6 onions
  • 6 peppers
  • 1 cupful of salt
  • 1 cupful of sugar
  • Vinegar enough to cover
  • 1 tablespoonful of cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoonful of cloves
  • 1 tablespoonful of allspice
  • 1 even spoonful of ginger

Instructions:

  1. Cut the tomatoes, onions, and peppers into small pieces.
  2. Sprinkle with salt and let stand overnight.
  3. Drain off the liquor the next day and discard.
  4. Mix all together, cover with vinegar, and simmer until tender.
  5. Seal in glass jars.

Cold Catsup

Ingredients:

  • 1 peck of ripe tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoonfuls of salt
  • 1 teacupful of white mustard seed
  • 2 teacupfuls of chopped or ground onions
  • 1 teacupful of sugar
  • 3 pints of vinegar
  • 2 tablespoonfuls of pepper
  • 4 red peppers
  • 8 celery stalks or 2 ounces of celery seed
  • 2 teaspoonfuls of ground cloves

Instructions:

  1. Drain the tomatoes well before mixing.
  2. Mix all ingredients together and let stand for a few hours.
  3. The catsup is ready for use.

Corn Relish

Ingredients:

  • 18 ears of corn
  • 1 onion
  • 1 cabbage
  • 2 peppers
  • 4 cupfuls of sugar
  • 1/2 cupful of salt
  • 1 pint of vinegar
  • 1/4 pound of mustard

Instructions:

  1. Cut the corn from the cob.
  2. Chop the onion, peppers, and cabbage.
  3. Add sugar, salt, and vinegar.
  4. Cook slowly for 45 minutes.
  5. Ten minutes before taking from the fire, add the dissolved mustard.
  6. Seal in glass jars.

Home-Made Cucumber Pickles

Ingredients:

  • Small cucumbers to fill four one-quart jars
  • 1 cupful of table salt
  • 1 teaspoonful of whole cloves (per jar)
  • 1 teaspoonful of whole allspice (per jar)
  • 1 teaspoonful of white mustard seed (per jar)
  • 2 pieces of alum, as large as a pea (per jar)
  • Boiling vinegar

Instructions:

  1. Wash the cucumbers and sprinkle with salt, letting them sit overnight.
  2. In the morning, wash and pack the cucumbers into jars.
  3. Add the cloves, allspice, mustard seed, and alum to each jar.
  4. Fill the jars with boiling vinegar and seal.

Quickly Made Cucumber Pickle

Ingredients:

  • Small cucumbers
  • Coarse salt (1 quart to a pail of water)
  • Vinegar
  • Alum (piece the size of a bean)

Instructions:

  1. Wipe the cucumbers clean and lay them in a small jar or crock.
  2. Boil the salt and water until the salt is dissolved, then pour boiling hot over the cucumbers.
  3. Cover tightly and let stand for 24 hours, then drain.
  4. Boil enough vinegar to cover the cucumbers, skimming thoroughly.
  5. Place the cucumbers in clean jars and pour the boiling vinegar over them.
  6. Add the alum and seal. The pickles will be ready for use in 48 hours.

Mixed Pickles

Ingredients:

  • 2 quarts of green tomatoes
  • 2 quarts of cucumbers
  • 2 quarts of small onions
  • 2 heads of cauliflower
  • 2 green peppers
  • 1 gallon of vinegar
  • 1 cupful of salt
  • 3 cupfuls of sugar
  • 1/2 pound of ground mustard
  • 1 ounce of turmeric powder
  • 1 cupful of flour

Instructions:

  1. Cut the tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, cauliflower, and peppers into small pieces.
  2. Pour boiling brine made from water and salt over them and let stand for 24 hours, then drain.
  3. Mix the flour, mustard, sugar, and turmeric powder with a little vinegar, then stir into the boiling vinegar.
  4. Add the vegetables and simmer until tender.
  5. Seal in glass jars.

Piccalilli, No. 1

Ingredients:

  • 1 peck of green tomatoes
  • 3 green peppers
  • 3 pints of vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cupfuls of sugar
  • 2 large spoonfuls of ground cloves

Instructions:

  1. Chop all ingredients together and simmer for three hours.
  2. Seal in glass jars.

Piccalilli, No. 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 peck of green tomatoes
  • 4 onions
  • 2 green peppers
  • 1 cupful of salt
  • Vinegar to cover
  • 1 ounce of whole cloves, allspice, and mustard seed

Instructions:

  1. Slice the tomatoes, sprinkle with salt, and let stand overnight.
  2. In the morning, drain and discard the water.
  3. Slice peppers and onions.
  4. Tie the spices in a piece of cheesecloth and combine all ingredients.
  5. Pour vinegar over the mixture and simmer for 3-4 hours.
  6. Seal in glass jars.

Piccalilli, No. 3

Ingredients:

  • 1 peck of green tomatoes
  • 6 onions
  • 4 green peppers
  • 1 cupful of salt
  • 1 ounce each of whole allspice, cloves, and mustard seed
  • Vinegar

Instructions:

  1. Clean and cut the vegetables into small pieces.
  2. Sprinkle with salt and let stand overnight.
  3. In the morning, drain off the liquid.
  4. Add sliced onions and peppers.
  5. Tie spices in a muslin bag and cover with vinegar.
  6. Cook slowly for 3-4 hours until tender.
  7. Seal in glass jars.

Tomato Catsup, No. 1

Ingredients:

  • 1 peck of ripe tomatoes
  • 8 onions
  • 6 red peppers
  • 6 cupfuls of vinegar
  • 2 cupfuls of sugar
  • 1/2 cupful of salt

Instructions:

  1. Chop or grind onions and peppers and combine with tomatoes.
  2. Stew and press through a colander.
  3. Add vinegar, sugar, and salt.
  4. Boil until thick and seal while hot in glass jars.

Tomato Catsup, No. 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 quarts of ripe tomatoes
  • 1 pint of vinegar
  • 1 tablespoonful of salt
  • 1 tablespoonful of mustard
  • 1 tablespoonful of black pepper
  • Allspice
  • 2 pods of red pepper

Instructions:

  1. Peel tomatoes and combine with salt, black pepper, mustard, red pepper, and allspice.
  2. Stew slowly in vinegar for 2 hours.
  3. Strain through a sieve and cook until reduced to one quart.
  4. Cork in bottles.

Pickled Watermelon Rind

Ingredients:

  • White part of watermelon rind
  • Alum
  • Vinegar
  • Whole allspice, cloves, and white mustard seed

Instructions:

  1. Pare off the green rind and all the pink, using just the white of the melon.
  2. Cut into large squares and cover with water, adding a pinch of alum.
  3. Let stand for 24 hours, then drain.
  4. Cover with vinegar and add spices.
  5. Heat the vinegar three mornings in succession and pour over the rind while hot.
  6. The pickles will be ready for use in a week.

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