This section is from the book "Philadelphia Cook Book: A Manual Of Home Economies", by Sarah Tyson Heston Rorer. Also available from Amazon: Philadelphia Cook Book.
Sweet pickles should be rich, and sufficiently cooked to keep without being hermetically sealed.
7 pounds of peaches 4 pounds of sugar 1 pint of vinegar 1/2 ounce of ginger root
1 teaspoonful of ground cloves 2 teaspoonfuls of allspice 2 teaspoonfuls of cinnamon 1/2 teaspoonful of ground mace
Pare the peaches, but do not remove the stones. Put the vinegar and sugar on to boil. Mix the spices, and divide them into four parts. Put each part into a small square of muslin, tie tightly, and then throw them into the sugar and vinegar. When this mixture is hot, add the peaches; bring all to boiling point, take from the fire, and turn carefully into a stone jar. Stand in a cool place over night. Next day, drain all the liquor from the peaches into a porcelain-lined kettle, stand it over a moderate fire, and, when boiling hot, pour it back in the jar over the peaches. Next day, drain and heat again as before, and do this for nine consecutive days; the last time boil the liquor down until there is just enough to cover the fruit. Add the fruit to it, bring the whole to a boil, and put in jars or tumblers for keeping. (526)
The following fruits may be pickled or spiced in the same manner:
Quinces Watermelon rind
For these, use none but the best cider vinegar. Do not boil it, as in this way it is weakened; bring it only to scalding-point before pouring it over the pickles. A tiny piece of alum scalded with cucumber or gherkin pickles makes them crisp.
Always prepare pickles in porcelain-lined or granite kettles; use wooden spoons, never metal. Spice carefully, so that one flavor will not predominate, but will all combine to make a pleasant whole. Cucumbers and other pickles are often so strongly flavored with onion, spices, etc., that the original flavor is entirely lost.
Pickles should be kept in a dark dry place in stone or glass jars.
Nasturtiums or a small piece of horse-radish thrown in each jar prevents the vinegar from moulding.
If you wish your cucumbers green, put them into cold vinegar in a porcelain-lined kettle, stand them over a mod-crate fire, and heat slowly until they become green.
As pickles of all kinds are indigestible, eat sparingly and masticate thoroughly.
6 large green tomatoes
1 large or two small Spanish onions 2 cucumbers 1 red and one green pepper
Chop all the vegetables, and mix them together. Put a layer about two inches thick in the bottom of a jar, sprinkle it with a tablespoonful of salt, then another layer of vegetables and salt, and so on until all is used. Let stand twenty-four hours, then drain, and press out all the liquor; cover with boiling water, let stand again ten minutes, then press with your hands until perfectly dry. Add to one quart of vinegar, a quarter-teaspoonful of powdered alum, and stir until dissolved. Now put a layer (two inches thick) of the pickles in the bottom of the jar, then sprinkle with mustard seed, black pepper, and the grated horse-radish; now another layer of pickles, and so on until all is used. Now pour over it the vinegar, let stand two days, and it is ready to use.