It’s that time of year when you get to feast upon the fruits of your labors and the harvest is in full swing. Have you ever considered pickling as a form of preserving your home grown produce?
I like to pickle all sorts of veggies: jalapeños, banana peppers, beets, green beans, garlic, you name it. Ironically I’ve never had much success personally with pickling cucumbers, but I know plenty of people who have!
Need a relish tray for that upcoming family dinner? No problem. Need to add an extra kick to those nachos for the big game? We’ve got you covered. Pickling is a yummy and creative way to preserve your produce for use in the months to come.
Let’s get started. First, what you put in is what you get out. So make sure to only use the best and highest quality produce (which of course starts with the premium quality seeds here at True Leaf).
Second, use a good recipe that your family enjoys. And when selecting a recipe, make sure to use one that follows proper preservation guidelines from the USDA canning guides. We would hate for anyone to get seriously ill because of the failure to follow proper guidelines. It really does matter.
Third, sometimes preserving takes time. Make sure to block out several hours to get the job done.
Here’s an example of a recipe my family enjoys. Happy canning!
Crisp Dilly Beans
Yield: Approx 7 quarts
- 10 pounds fresh green beans
- 10 cups distilled white vinegar
- 8 cups water
- 1 cup salt
- 2-3 garlic cloves, peeled, per jar
- 1 bunch dried dill weed, per jar
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper, per jar
- Sterilize 7 quart size wide mouth jars with rings and lids and keep hot. Wash and trim tip off beans.
- In a large pot stir together the vinegar and water, and dissolve the salt until boiling. Keep brine hot.
- In each jar, place 2-3 peeled cloves of garlic, 1 generous bunch of dill and ¼ tsp cayenne pepper. Then tightly pack green beans into the jars so they are standing on their ends.
- Ladle the very hot brine into the jars, filling to within ½-¼ inch of the tops.
- Boil lids for 3 minutes, clean the tops of the jars, and process in a boiling water bath canner covered with at least 1 inch water for 35 minutes.
- Let dilly beans sit for at least 3 weeks before eating.