Kitchen Tip Tuesday: Pickling Spice

With 25 lbs of cucumbers filling my kitchen over the weekend, I browsed through lists of pickle recipes, and made jar after jar of pickles!  
Since I have quite the accumulation of bulk spices from the Oregon Spice Company, and a nearby Asian Market, I knew I could likely make a good pickling spice.  I really didn’t want to buy the mediocre plastic tub of “Pickling Spice” that was for sale next to the bags of cucumbers.  
Mustard Seed is a fairly inexpensive spice (compared to the other Pickling Spice ingredients), so many “cheap” pickling spice mixes will be mostly Mustard Seed, and not much else.  (Some will have a high quantity of red chili flakes, too.)  
As a birthday gift this past year, my mom sent me a box of wonderful Penzey’s Spices (mostly Asian/Indian spices), so I headed to their site for inspiration.  Their pickling spice sounded incredible!  (We love to give foods/ingredients as gifts in our family- last Christmas, Calvin’s stocking stuffers were Asian spices/foods!)  
Here is what I came up with, using dried spices that were in my kitchen: 
Pickling Spice
Cinnamon Sticks, crushed to make 1/4 cup (I used a rolling pin)
3-4 Tbl. Yellow Mustard Seeds
2 Tbl. Whole Coriander Seeds
2 Tbl. Whole Allspice Berries
1 Tbl. Chinese Five Spice Powder (a blend that has star anise, fennel, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper)
1 Tbl. Whole Black Peppercorns
1-2 Tbl. Crushed Bay Leaves (about 8)
1 Tbl. Ginger Powder
1 Tbl. Dried Red Chili Pepper Flakes
1-2 tsp. Dried Dillweed
2 tsp. Whole Cloves
1 1/2 tsp. Celery Seed Powder
1-2 tsp. Ground Mace
Mix all ingredients together well in a jar.  Use whenever a recipe calls for Pickling Spice!

By request, here are a couple recipes I used: 
Easy Dill Pickles (I added extra garlic cloves to each jar, and I didn’t soak the cucumbers)

Go to Laura’s Musings to find out more about the Carnival of Home Preserving!
For more Kitchen Tip Tuesday ideas, go to Tammy’s Recipes!  
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