Cucumbers. There are a lot of them floating around right now. We picked up a bunch of pickling cukes, you know those smaller ones which look like pickles, so this week I decided to make some pickles. But not just any pickles. Million Dollar Pickles. At least that’s what my mom’s recipe book calls them. You may also know them as Bread and Butter pickles.
No idea where the Million Dollar name comes from and I never heard of them. But looking at the recipe I was guessing the pickles would turn out tasting just like what I know as bread and butter pickles. I asked my mom about the similarity and she said, yeah, they are pretty much bread and butter pickles. Now there may be differences between the two…but you’ll be hard pressed to find it. Almost identical ingredients and methods for both. At least according to the interwebz.
Growing up, I never really liked bread and butter pickles. As a young child I liked dill or the sweet gherkins. Yeah yeah I know, I liked those stupid little overly sweet pickles but not the bread and butter. It’s a different type of sweet! Anyway, bread and butter pickles were the ones my grandmother made a lot of. Repeat, A LOT. Mostly because Pop-Pop’s garden gave her huge baskets of cucumbers. A jar of bread and butter’s wouldn’t always be on the lunch table at Grandma and Pop-Pop’s, but it was a pretty safe bet.
Having now made these I see why. You’re able make and can these pickles really really really fast. If you have loads of cucumbers this is the way to get rid of them. I didn’t start liking bread and butter pickles until I was older and discovered that yes, they really are good with sandwiches and potato chips. It’s the sweetness playing with the salty. Ok, back to today’s pickles.
Like I said, these are ridiculously easy and the amount of time you’re actually doing something is very minimal. Let the brine do the work overnight then cook the cucumbers for 20 minutes. Pour into mason jars and you’re done. Now normally when canning you’re supposed to process the jars in hot water but the recipe didn’t call for that. Just ‘pour into hot sterilized jars.’
I asked a canning expert (my mom) about this and she said if making a small batch, a few jars to keep in the fridge, processing isn’t really necessary. The hot pickle mixture will cool and form a seal good enough for the fridge. They won’t be around long enough. However, if you’re storing them in the basement for when the zombie apocalypse comes then yes process them according canning instructions!
I made half of what the original recipe calls for so you can easily double this for 6 pint jars worth. I also changed a couple things, used shallots instead of small onions, left out celery seed (didn’t have any) and used yellow mustard seed instead of white (again, didn’t have any). They taste just like I remember and yes, are great with some sandwiches and potato chips at lunch.
Million Dollar Pickles/Bread and Butter Pickles (makes 3 pint jars)
- 2 qts sliced cucumbers
- 6-8 shallots, sliced
- 1 green pepper, sliced and diced
- ¼ C salt
- 1 C cider vinegar
- 2 C sugar
- ½ tsp turmeric
- 1 Tbs yellow mustard seed
- ½ tsp pickling spices
Slice cucumbers, shallots, peppers, and place in a large crock. Sprinkle with the salt and cover with water. Soak overnight.
Drain the next day. Set aside.
Combine vinegar, sugar, turmeric, mustard seeds, pickling spices in a large pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
Add drained cucumber mix into syrup and cook 20 minutes or until tender.
Pour into hot sterilized jars. Makes 3 pints.