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Last week, I was talking with my friend April about fermenting my yearly batch of dill pickles. She immediately got excited.

“Come over to my house, let’s make them together!” she said excitedly. “You can teach me how to do it!”

“Oh,” I said, “It’s so easy, I can just send you my recipe.”She pressed me to come over and teach her, though she has plenty of fermenting experience. Finally, I caved.

So, later that weekend, I went in search of big bunches of flowering dill, bought onions, pulled garlic from the garden, pedaled out to the farmer’s market to choose my cucumbers (never could grow my own), and begged some grape leaves from another friend’s vines.

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April and I spent an afternoon putting together our pickle jars. Well, we really spent the few minutes it takes layering cucumbers and other ingredients. Most of the time we spent laughing, chatting, feeding kids, oohing and aahing over our beautiful pickle jars, enjoying the day.

I realized that while fermenting is simple and quick when you’re on your own, it’s just as easy, but much more enjoyable, with friends.

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And don’t those pickles look good?!