Making pickles was easy. It's all easy once you get over your fear of not knowing something. We used the Quick Kosher Dills recipe out of The Encyclopedia of Country Living, 10th Edition, by Carla Emery. For every 4 pounds of pickling cucumbers, you need 14 split garlic cloves, 1/4 cup pickling salts*, 2 3/4 cups of vinegar, 3 cups of water, 14 heads of fresh dill and 28 peppercorns. (We found that we needed more liquid than was called for.) We were lucky enough to have fresh, organic garlic and dill from the market where Alli works.
Boil the garlic with the vinegar, water and salt. While we boiled these things, we also boiled the jars and lids we used for canning and halved the cucumbers.
When the juice comes to a boil, take the garlic out. We used quart size jars. Put 4 cloves of garlic in each jar, then stuffed 8-10 cucumber halves. into each one. We squeezed 4 peppercorns and the dill into the jars the poured the hot liquid on top.
The water bath for canning was slowly heated to 180°. The hotter the water and the longer you cook them, the less crunchy the pickles will be. Once the jars were filled, the lids are placed on loosely, but not too loose. Carefully place the jars into the water bath for 15 minutes. Remove, let cool and listen for the best cooking sound ever, the POP! of the jars sealing.
Wait at least three weeks to let the vinegar and salt do their pickling.
*Pickling salts are salts with nothing added. We used sea salt.