When you're pickling cucumbers, you must cut off the blossom ends.
It's easy to tell which is the blossom end if you're harvesting cucumbers from your own garden. You can see the stem and you'll know that the blossom was on the opposite side of the fruit. If you buy cucumbers from the store they probably won't have any stems. Find the blossom end by looking for the rough dot (instead of the smooth, indented dot) at the end of the cuke.
PICKLING Why does this matter?
There's an enzyme in the blossom that can make the pickle soft and unsafe to eat. Who says so? The National Center for Home Food Preservation, that's who. So go ahead and cut at least a 1/16-inch slice off the blossom end. Make that slice, and when you preserve lovely jars of dill pickles, like Wendy and Joe in our video, the pickles will be crisp and crunchy. Click here to find out why doing the opposite makes your cucumbers less bitter.