PREPARE boiling water canner. Heat jars and lids in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil. Set bands aside.
TIE pickling spice in a square of cheesecloth, creating a spice bag.
COMBINE vinegar, water, sugar, pickling salt and spice bag in a large stainless steel saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar and salt. Reduce heat and boil gently for 15 minutes, until spices have infused the liquid.
PLACE 1 bay leaf, 1 garlic clove, 1/2-teaspoon mustard seeds and 1 head of dill into each jar. Pack cucumber slices into hot jars leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Ladle hot pickling liquid into jar to cover cucumbers leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and re-measure headspace. If needed, add more pickling liquid to meet recommended headspace. Wipe rim. Center lid on jar. Apply band and adjust until fit is fingertip tight.
PROCESS filled jars in a boiling water canner for 15 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed. Makes about 5 (16 oz) pints
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