Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Pickle

In the interest of bringing you something a little new, I have decided to join in other bloggers in a light hearted bit of blog sharing. Each month on the 20th of the month we will all write on the same topic. It should prove interesting to gain the perspective of others from all over the country. Here’s the the list of this months players: Andes Cruz:
Stephanie Nocito Clark:
Kirsten Skiles:
Natsuko Hanks:
Shaun Young:
Brad Severtson:
Wendy Kelly:
Beth Cyr:
Kathleen Krucoff:
Kathryn Cole:
This month’s topic: "Your favorite winter meal/ recipe?
     Those of you that know me from face book will expect me to write something about pie. I could. I try to keep my pie statements on open Facebook pages and not bring that metaphor here. That leaves me in a bit of a pickle. I live in Florida not far from the beach. I could type about my favorite cheeseburger in paradise. I almost did. But O' Mattie's is full of snow birds this time of year I just didn't relish the concept of going there right now. Besides O' Mattie's  serves their cheeseburger with a slice of pickle and unless I remember to say hold the pickle to the waitress I get that juice on my fries. I admire Heines and his 57 varieties of pickles He makes great Ketchup. He can keep his pickles in his pocket.  I can not be fooled into eating cucumbers.
     All of this thinking leads me to discover a common thread. The common thread even has a direct tie in to the world of metal smithing. How cool it that? Not only that but I was out of fresh noncontaminated pickle.
Here's how this goes. I hammer on some copper. All of that hammering on the copper forces the molecules of copper to get tightly packed together, we call that process work hardening. In order to get the molecules to relax I heat up the metal, a process called annealing. That gets the copper all covered in oxides and other stuff., dirt. The process used to clean the metal is called pickling. The stuff I make to pickle in is called, ( You'll never guess) pickle!   I could clean some copper with a solution of vinegar and salt, Same stuff minus eleven herbs and spices that I could to mess up a cucumber. I could clean some copper with Taco Bell taco sauce. Same basic ingredients. My personal opinion it that it takes too long that way.
I annealed some copper pieces.

 I made some dirty copper pieces. I want to clean them in pickle. I could use hydrochloric acid or muratic acid.  That's way too fast and the fumes are not so good to breath. I could pick up the jewelry supply stuff catalog and order some commercial pickle. I did that once, a long long tome ago. At that time I read the container. The stuff is sodium bisulfate. I don't have to order it.  I can just go get some at Home Depot.
All nice and pickled, now. Nothing is ever quite that simple. I usually mix some distilled water and the sodium bisuflate in my crock pot heat it up to about 125 Fahrenheit and chill out for a while. However these things are too large for my crockpot.
I'm not that easily defeated. Sure I don't get to use heat as a catalyst for the chemical reaction, fine with me.
I'll take this time to show you what to look for in Home Depot
That's the stuff..Some of this into some distilled water, instant pickle.  My favorite kind.  Now that I have my work done I can go enjoy my cheeseburger in paradise. Check out what the other bloggers wrote about this month. I'll bet they didn't write about pickle. Enjoy


  1. haha! how fun - you know one time i tried adding salt to the vinegar and had horrible results. so i just use plain vinegar now - and guess what - I use pickle jars! haha! i mean, they already smell like vinegar :)

  2. Brad, fantastic post! I am so very glad you decided to join us. witty, and informative, and also with a side of pie :)

  3. haha, pickle! I did not see that coming! I use plain salt & vinegar and works fine for me. thank you so much for fun post! ~Natsuko