Our summer harvest has been a mixed success this year. The extraordinary heat that we had a while ago wiped out our tomato crop, the lettuces and many of the herbs bolted at the same time, but with other vegetables and herbs we've had some success.
The cucumber crop was very good and, as Tony loves gherkins, he decided to do his own preserving of the early crop and then followed up with some corn relish as the corn has also done well.
For the gherkins he did a wet brining* and then made a spiced vinegar using cloves, star anise, cinnamon sticks, black peppercorns, whole coriander seeds and caraway seeds -- he found the process surprisingly easy! Now he has to wait a few months to see if the preserves taste as good as they look.
* A wet brine is a solution of salt and water in which the vegetables are immersed for 24 hours. The brine is then drained, the vinegar prepared and then added to the soaked vegetables.