Whether you are new to food preservation or would simply like to try new canning recipes, it can be helpful to buy some pickling books to help you with this. The right books should tell you a little bit about making brine from salt and vinegar and describe marinating your produce in this solution. It is helpful if the book has very simple instructions and colorful pictures of each step so it will be easy for you to follow.
You may want to make traditional types of pickles by using cucumbers, or you may want to try other fruits or vegetables. Some crops that you might want to pickle include okra, cabbage, or watermelon rinds. Each one of these items must be pickled in a different way, so it is important for pickling books to distinguish between these. It can be especially helpful if the manuals tell you which varieties are best for home canning and how to identify these different varieties at a produce market.
When you are doing any type of food preservation, you will need to have your hands free much of the time. This means it can be helpful to place pickling books on a stand so you can look at them while preparing your vegetables. As a result, you may not want to choose books that are very thick, as they may not stay open when they are standing up. Ones that have a spiral-type binding will make it easier for you to turn the pages than a book that has pages sewn or glued together.
Before you buy pickling books, it is a good idea to look through them to see what type of recipes they contain. You may want to read a few of these recipes in order to see if they call for ingredients you are unfamiliar with. If this is the case, you may not be able to find these items easily or they might be expensive if you do locate them. Try to stick to cookbooks with recipes that call for typical pickling ingredients such as dill, tumeric, or mustard seed rather than exotic spices.
You do not need to spend a great deal of money in order to find pickling books you like. Many times, you can find these items at flea markets or secondhand book stores. By shopping at one of these locations, you may be able to locate some gently used canning books to add to your collection at a fraction of the cost new books might be.