There is nothing quite like a "Mouth Watering" Kosher New York City Sour Pickle or Sour Tomato from a wooden barrel.
13 -20 kirby cucumbers, Wash and scrub to remove dirt (No waxed cucumbers, about 3 lbs)
1/2 cup kosher salt or 1/2 cup coarse salt
1/4 cup vinegar
3 tablespoons pickling spices, Remove cloves.
6 -8 garlic cloves (skin removed and crushed)
2 teaspoons dill seeds
1/2 teaspoon chili pepper flakes
1/8 teaspoon alum (optional)
Cut 1/16 inch off the blossom end. Discard any cucumbers that are bruised or damaged.
In a 3 1/2 quart glass jar add the Kirby Cucumbers standing them upright (Turning the jar on its side will help).
Put all the spices into a large bowl (Alum Optional), add some water and mix. Then pour this mixture into the jar, top off with water. Adding a piece of rye bread is also optional.
Place a small item (A piece of plastic, wood, etc.) on top to keep the Kirby Cucumbers down and under the water/brine.
Close jar and turn upside down to mix all the ingredients --.
Next open jar, put "plastic wrap" on the top (Use a rubber band to keep in place); Then using a kitchen knife punch many holes in the "plastic wrap" in order to let some of the brine gases out.
Let the Kirby cucumbers stand 2-3 weeks (in a "COOL" location) depending on how fast they cure in the brine; From time-to-time you can remove any scum on the top, add a little salted water to top off -- and shake the mixture. Then place in the refrigerator!
Note: For half sour pickles, let it pickle for about 1 week -- and then place in the refrigerator!
thanks to: http://www.food.com/recipe/shlomos-kosher-sour-pickles-tomatoes-by-sy-73027