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Old 02-25-2006, 08:31 PM   #1
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Pickle Problem.....

I canned sweet pickles about 3 weeks ago, using a recipe directly from the Ball book. I followed it to a tee, and yet when I went to fill my final 2 jars, there wasn't enough liquid left over to completely cover the contents. I went ahead and processed them anyway, then I was just glancing through the Ball book again and noticed that it saya in the back of the book that the contents must be completely covered or the pickles are no good. Well - working on canning just 6 jars for a couple of hours, I'm not too happy that 2 of my 6 jars will be bad. Has anyone else encountered this problem from a "tested" recipe from the Ball book?

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Old 02-25-2006, 08:37 PM   #2
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I've never used the Ball book. This site is my bible when it comes to preserving. It hasn't steered me wrong yet. Maybe it will help you out too.
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Old 02-25-2006, 11:04 PM   #3
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I have never used any recipe from any source that was "exactly" on the money - it's always a little more or a little less. The ones that use weight instead of cups are closer ... but not always exactly right as to the yield. If you look at your recipe again I bet you'll notice they say that the yield will be ABOUT so much.

From your description - it sounds like the recipe should have made about 6 jars.

One suggestion I would make would be to add the pickles to all the jars and then fill them with liquid one jar at a time. I'm guess from your situation that you put your pickles into your jars and then added the liquid a ladel at a time to each jar ... thus you ran short on the last two jars. Had you added the liquid up to the headspace level one jar at a time - you would have 5 jars and some leftover.

I've used the same recipes for jams, butters, and marmalades for years and they never have exactly the same yield.

Hope this helps.
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Old 02-26-2006, 08:21 AM   #4
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I have had the same problem and now always make more then the recipe calls for.
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Old 02-26-2006, 08:32 AM   #5
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Maybe the recipe was made for smaller pickles and/or jars...?
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Old 02-26-2006, 08:49 AM   #6
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At this point I'd say do nothing. The only thing that might be bad are two-three pickles on the very top, not the whole jar. I pickle all the time, sometimes cucumbers are big, some times they are small and that will make difference how they will pack in the jar. That is why you should aways make some extra liquid. I wouldn't worry about. Just discard couple of top pickles, when it's time to open that jar.
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Old 03-04-2006, 05:15 PM   #7
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FYI - I opened my first jar today, I threw out the few pickles on top that weren't covered in the liquid, and ate the ones that were covered. They were just fine - I ate them last night, and I'm not dead yet - so I think I'm good to go :)
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Old 03-04-2006, 07:28 PM   #8
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I gotta go with Michael on this one.

How much fluid you need depends upon how big, or small, the pickles are.
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Old 03-11-2006, 02:00 PM   #9
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I always make a bit extra pickling solution too. It is cheap to throw out if you have too much. Most aggravating to run short! I've been there.
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