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Old 07-21-2009, 09:08 PM   #1
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Pickling Problem!

I just made some pickles and hot water canned them- but when I pulled them out of the bath, the brine, which had been filled almost to the top of the jars, was only 3/4s full. Does anyone know what happened, and if the pickles are still safe to eat?


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Old 07-21-2009, 11:40 PM   #2
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If the jars sealed properly they will be safe. You may have had the spring lid on too tight which caused too much pressure to build up before the purge occurred and a lot was forced out. Spring lids should only be on finger-tight. The headspace is the air space that is normally purged out during the heating and expansion during processing.

Another cause is exposure to a sudden temperature change, especially if there is a draft when the lid is removed. When the heat is removed, wait a few minutes for things to cool down a bit before removing the lid.

Support bacteria. It's the only culture some people have.
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Old 07-22-2009, 07:09 AM   #3
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Thank you! I'm glad they'll still be edible!
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Old 07-22-2009, 11:07 PM   #4
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Take it from some one who knows. You have to have at least a half inch headspace from the top of the jar. I know it's tempting to fill it more, that last cuke needs to be covered etc. But don't do it. When the pressure expands the jars need to seal, not release a little excess liquid before doing so. It's a good thing you had no collapsed jars which means they are inedible of course.
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