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Old fashioned Pickle Barrel Pickles
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Gently scrub pickles with a vegetable brush and rinse with cool water. Dry thoroughly. In a large stoneware crock or a deep enamel kettle sprinkle in half of pickling spices, dill and garlic over the bottom. Layer cucumbers in crock, filling within 3 inches of top. Sprinkle with remaining pickling spices, dill and garlic. Mix vinegar with salt and 2 quarts of water. Pour over cucumbers, to cover. Weight with a plate and cans, making sure cucumbers are completely submerged. Cover loosely with cheesecloth. Check pickles each day and skim off scum as it forms -- it may not begin to form until fifth day. Do not stir pickles, but make sure they remain completely submerged in brine at all times. If necessary, add additional brine. Leave for 3 to 4 weeks. Pickles will turn an olive-drab color and texture will be soft-crisp and be uniformly translucent. Let stand an additional month to develop flavor, replacing brine as necessary.
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