What to do with very large cucumbers – Cucumber Relish!

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Super large cucumbers are often hard to transform into crispy pickle spears, and are often quite seedy, but still have much potential! I recently had some very large cucumbers. My initial plan was to pickle them, but their seedy nature was making that difficult. So, we changed things up a little. After I washed and trimmed them, I used my mandolin to slice as much of each cucumber as I could until the seeds began to interfere with the crispness of the slice. All of these nice slices were transformed into Maw Maw’s Cucumber Salad which we’d shared earlier. Yum!MawMawsCucumberSaladCrackerJar

I took the remaining cucumber parts, sliced them lengthwise and scooped out the seeds. These were then cubed for relish! I like a relish in which all of the players can be identified, so removing the seedy watery parts helps to maintain more texture.Cubed Veggies for Relish

As it turns out, I knew that I’d be short on Peppers for this recipe, so I washed & cubed all of my peppers first to see what ratio of the original recipe I’d be able to make. I ended up with only half of what the recipe called for.

Cucumber Relish – a small batch or a half batch.

Based on the recipe from the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving 

This recipe makes 4 Pints.  (You might notice that I only have 3 Pints and a 12oz Jar – I used a small portion as an ingredient in a crockpot chicken meal.)

Ingredients

5 cups cucumbers
2 cups green bell peppers
2 cups red /yellow bell peppers
½ cup onion
¼ to ½ cup pickling salt
1 ½ cup white vinegar
1 ¼ cup sugar
1 ½ tbsp. celery seeds
1 ½ tbsp. mustard seeds

Clean, seed (as appropriate) and finely chop the cucumbers, green & yellow bell peppers and onion.

In a non-reactive bowl, combine the cucumbers, peppers, onions, and the pickling salt and cover it. Let it set in a cool place for about 4 hours.

Transfer into a colander in the sink and rinse thoroughly with cold water for 4 minutes. Drain well, gently press more of the excess water out with your hands, set aside to drain further. Cucumber Relish Rinsed & DrainingPrepare water bath canner, jars & lids.

In a large non-reactive saucepan, combine vinegar, sugar, mustard seeds & celery seeds. On medium heat, and while stirring, bring to a boil. ucumber Relish BrineAdd cucumber, pepper & onion mixture and while stirring, return to a boil. Reduce heat, but maintain a gentle boil for about 10 minutes.

Scoop the relish into warmed canning jars, allowing ½ inch of headspace. Cucumber Relish Up CloseRemove any air bubbles, wipe rims clean, lid the jars and apply rings only to finger-tip tightness.

Place jars into the prepared water bath canner. Adjust water level if needed (you should have at least an inch above the jars) so that the jars are completely covered throughout the process. Bring to a boil and process jars (8oz and 16oz) for 10 minutes.  When the time is up, remove from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes before carefully removing them from the canner.

Place hot filled jars on a towel lined counter to cool untouched for 12 hours. When jars have completely cooled, remove rings, test the seal and store in a cool dark place. If any of your lids have not sealed, refrigerate it and enjoy right away! Cucumber Relish Sealed in Orchard Road Canning Jars

14 Comments

  1. Colleen Towle
    Posted August 9, 2015 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    I use the large cucumbers that have turned yellow to make sweet cherry pickles. They are the best! They remind me of watermelon pickles. I would be glad to share the recipe if anyone would like it.

    • Robyn
      Posted August 10, 2015 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

      Yes please !

    • Traci
      Posted August 30, 2015 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

      I would love the recipe

    • Norma oien
      Posted July 25, 2016 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

      I would like your recipe

    • Marjolaine
      Posted August 7, 2016 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

      I would like to have it please !

    • Brenda Grady
      Posted August 18, 2016 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

      Yes, I’d like this recipe

    • colleen
      Posted August 24, 2016 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

      I would love that recipe. Please share it. Thanks!

    • Erin
      Posted August 27, 2016 at 10:37 am | Permalink

      Please share!

  2. Ricky Adams
    Posted July 28, 2016 at 3:16 am | Permalink

    Please.

  3. Elizabeth
    Posted August 14, 2016 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

    Me too, please!

  4. Lucy
    Posted August 26, 2016 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    I made one years ago (not this recipe) and found it vinegary tasting.
    Did anyone find this recipe less vinegary tasting? My kids won’t touch it if it is.

    Making a salsa recipe today, next will be something to use up all the cucumbers and zucchinis in the garden.

    • Posted August 30, 2016 at 8:45 am | Permalink

      We don’t think that this one has a strong vinegar taste. In fact, I’ve tried cutting back on the sugar a little bit and it was still good! Also, because this isn’t a preserving recipe, the vinegar can be adjusted down if you wish. :-)

  5. Johanne Hagar
    Posted August 28, 2016 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    The relish sounds good but I would like to see the recipe for the cherry pickle version also. Thank you

  6. Paul Sametz
    Posted August 30, 2016 at 2:59 am | Permalink

    I made a small batch that was nice and sweet. Then when I got more big pickles, I made a second, double batch, but I had brined the cukes overnight or longer, and maybe didn’t rinse them enough – and after I’d canned 14 small jars (7 pints altogether) I thought I’d just label them “Briny Relish”. But my sweetheart had other ideas.
    So I opened them, triple-rinsed the relish, and heated some vinegar and sugar – not too much, just to keep it from scorching – tasting as I go along. Got it boiling, then simmering, quite awhile. See, those larger cukes have tough skins and they need extra cooking. Also added another red pepper and three jalapeños, and by the time the jars were filled, I had only eleven jars! Must have done a LOT of tasting!
    Something that’s been cooked, canned, re-cooked and re-canned can only have one name, I feel: HOUSE RELISH. It’s very good!

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