One of the ways that I love to use a bounty of fresh cucumbers is to make sweet cucumber relish. It is delicious on a hot dog or mixed in potato or egg salad.
You know it's summertime when the pickle making begins, and that's what I've been doing for the past week or so. That and watering because we have had temps over 100 for about a week now. And cucumbers must have a constant supply of water to keep producing.
So today I'm sharing my sweet cucumber relish recipe that is the perfect condiment for those upcoming cookouts that you'll be having or attending for the Fourth of July.
This recipe could be made without processing with a water bath and stored in the refrigerator for a few weeks, but once you make homemade relish, you are going to want to have some to use later in the year. Because once you make this, you will never be able to go back to store-bought relish.
How to make Sweet Cucumber Relish
Learn how to make my famous sweet cucumber relish with step-by-step instructions, detailed pictures, and helpful tips.
To make this sweet cucumber relish, you will need about 8 to 10 small to medium sized pickling cucumbers. ( I have a lot of cucumbers in this photo because I double this recipe!) Wash the cucumbers and cut off the blossom and stem ends.
Cut the cucumbers into chunks and chop them in a food processor, being careful not to over-process them.
Wash, seed, and chop 3 large green peppers into small pieces and do the same to about 5 medium sweet onions.
Combine all the chopped vegetables in a large bowl and sprinkle them with ½ cup pickling salt. Stir the mixture to evenly distribute the salt and add enough cold water to cover the vegetables. Cover and allow to stand at room temperature for 2 hours. Transfer the mixture to a colander set in the sink, rinse with cold water and allow to drain.
Meanwhile, combine 3 cups sugar and 2 cups cider vinegar in a heavy stainless steel or nonstick pot. Bring to a boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Add 1 tablespoon mustard seeds, 2 teaspoons celery seeds, and 1 teaspoon ground turmeric to the vinegar solution along with the chopped vegetables. Return to boiling then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Ladle the hot relish into hot, sterilized pint jars, leaving a ½ inch headspace. Wipe jar rims and add lids and screw bands.
At this point, you can store the jars of relish in the refrigerator after the jars have cooled and use the relish within a few weeks. But to truly preserve the fresh taste of summer, I process the jars using a water-bath method for 10 minutes.
If you have an instant pot, check out Instant Pot canning basics for an in-depth guide to water-bath and steam canning.
FINAL SWEET CUCUMBER RELISH
This relish is the perfect balance between sweet and tangy and tastes superb on hot dogs and brats! It also is a great addition to potato or egg salad.
If you don't have a garden, get some pickling cucumbers from your local farmer's market and try this recipe. Make some for yourself and your friends and family.
How to store
If you don't process your jars, be sure to tell them to store the relish in the refrigerator and use within a few weeks. But if you process the jars, the relish will last for at least a year in the pantry.
Sweet Cucumber Relish
A delicious sweet and tangy relish that tastes great on hot dogs and in potato salad.
- 8-10 medium pickling cucumbers (washed and finely chopped)
- 5 medium sweet onions (finely chopped)
- 3 large green peppers (washed, seeded, and finely chopped)
- ½ cup pickling salt
- cold water for rinsing
- 2 cups cider vinegar
- 3 cups sugar
- 1 tablespoon mustard seeds
- 2 teaspoons celery seeds
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- Combines chopped cucumbers, onions, and peppers in a large bowl.
- Sprinkle with pickling salt and stir to distribute the salt throughout the mixture.
- Add enough cold water to cover the vegetables
- Cover and allow to stand for 2 hours at room temperature.
- Transfer vegetables to a colander set in the sink.
- Rinse with cold water and allow to drain.
- In a large stainless-steel or nonsitck pot, combine sugar and vinegar.
- Heat to boiling, stirring until the sugar dissolves.
- Add the mustard seeds, celery seeds, and turmeric to the solution along with the chopped vegetables.
- Return to boiling, reduce heat, and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Ladle the hot relish into hot, sterilized canning jars, leafing a ½ inch headspace.
- Wipe the rims, add the lids and screw bands.
- Process the filled jars in a boiling-water canner for 10 minutes.
- Remove the jars from the canner, place on a dry towel, and allow to cool overnight.
If you do not want to process the relish, store the jars in the refrigerator after they have cooled and use within a few weeks.