Michigan State University Extension
Preserving Food Safely - 01600559
Fresh-pack pickles--such as fresh-pack dill pickles, crosscut pickles slices (bread-and-butter pickles), sweet gherkins, or cauliflower pickles--are quick and easy to prepare. Some recipes call for soaking vegetables for a few hours or overnight in brine (salt water). After soaking, they are drained, packed into clean, hot jars, and covered with boiling-hot pickling solution. The jars are then closed with two-piece canning lids and processed in a boiling-water bath.
The pickling solution must contain plenty of vinegar. Some old recipes call for too little vinegar to insure safety. Never decrease the vinegar in a pickling recipe.
Avoid packing vegetables too tightly into jars. Plenty of room must be left for the boiling-hot pickling solution to circulate around pickles during processing. Spoilage is a problem when pickles are wedged tightly into jars.