This Dame Cooks A Collection of Recipes from Alaska to the South Pacific and Caribbean

Quick Pickled Green Beans

07.28.2014 · Posted in Preserves & Condiments

“From vine to brine in less than 12 hours” is the rule of thumb for home pickling.  This brine is so simple to make and can be made in large volumes so you can pickle as you pick those young tender beans, baby cukes and okra.   Add a slice of garlic, a tiny dried chile, and dill weed to the jar for real zing.

According to the Pickle History Timeline ( http://www.nyfoodmuseum.org/_ptime.htm) pickling is one of the oldest food preservation methods known to man.   In the fifteenth century A.D.: ”Before Amerigo Vespucci set out to explore the New World, he was a pickle peddler in Seville, Spain. Since food spoilage and the lack of healthy meals were such concerns on long voyages, he loaded up barrels of pickled vegetables onto explorer ships. Hundreds of sailors were spared the ravages of scurvy because of Vespucci’s understanding of the nutritional benefits of pickles.”  It’s interesting to note that the cucumber came from India in 2030 B.C. and dill weed was introduced to Western Europe from Sumatra in 900 A.D.  Nearly 50% of all cucumbers grown in the United States are pickled.  And while a pickle is a cucumber, any vegetable or fruit can be pickled.   Generally pickles are a good source of Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Calcium and Iron.

Pickled green beans are super in Bloody Mary’s and Salad Niçoise.  Add them to a relish tray with other pickles and olives or toss them in a salad with purple potatoes and boiled eggs.  You’ll find a lot ways to utilize pickles from your garden.  They also make a terrific gift.  Nothing is more appreciated than a basket of homemade preserves, condiments and pickles.

This recipe works for cucumbers and okra too.  Add yellow mustard seeds instead of chile peppers.  You can substitute dill seeds if fresh dill weed is not available.  Just double or triple the amount of vinegar, water and salt to make a big batch of brine ready to use.

Ingredients for 3 pints:

  • 2-1/2 pounds freshly picked green beans (Haricot Verts recommended), washed and vine-end trimmed
  • 2 cups distilled white vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup canning salt (Kosher salt or sea salt)
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced in half
  • 1 bunch dill weed (seed heads included) divided into 3
  • 3 tiny red chile peppers or 1/4 tsp of red pepper flakes in each jar

Method:

  1. Sterilize 3 pint jars with rings and lids.  Keep warm.  Trim green beans to 1/2 inch shorter than the jar.
  2. Drop a chile and a garlic (2 halves) into each jar.  Arrange beans in jar with cut ends toward the top, packing beans in fairly tight so they won’t float up to the lid.
  3. Tuck dill weed into the center of the beans.
  4. In a stainless steel pot, combine vinegar, water and salt.  Bring to a boil and stir until salt is dissolved
  5. Pour boiling brine over beans up to 1/4-inch from top of jar.  Wipe the lip of the jar and seal with lid and ring.
  6. Let rest in a draft-free area.  Beans will ferment in the refrigerator in about 2 weeks.
  7. For longer storage, place hot jars into a boiling water bath with 1 inch of water covering the tops.  Simmer for 10 minutes.  Remove to a draft-free area and once cooled check that lids have properly sealed.  If the lids do not spring back when pressed they are sealed.  Refrigerate any jars that have not sealed.
  8. Store sealed jars in cool, dark pantry for 1 year or longer.
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