Thursday, September 09, 2010

Silly Dilly Beans

Over Labor Day weekend, the DH and I took a quick trip to his sister's house and came home with all kinds of wonderful things. From the SIL's land, we got red potatoes, yukon gold potatoes, patty pan squash, crookneck squash, pears, fresh eggs, a frozen chicken, and a lot of green beans. We also went down the road a piece and bought watermelon, cantaloupe, and corn on the cob. Then, on our trip home, we stopped in Yakima and bought local honey, peaches, and plums. The entire back of the car was filled with food.

Once we got home, we had to figure out what to do with all of this bounty. I'm not a big fan of frozen beans, so I chatted with a few folks and decided to make Dilly Beans. First, we had to wash all the beans and trim the ends.
Once all the beans were trimmed, they were ready to go. Don't they look wonderful?

Almost good enough to eat! It took two trips to the store to get everything we needed to make the recipe. They only had tiny containers of dill weed at the grocery store I went to on the first trip and that just wouldn't do.
Once we had everything, we put most of the ingredients in the bottom of the jars. I also put the lids in a pan to sterilize and put the vinegar/water/salt mixture on the stove to boil while we stuffed the jars.Stuffing the jars was the hardest part of this recipe. Overall, the recipe is pretty easy, so the hardest part wasn't that bad.Once the jars were filled, we poured in the vinegar mixture, put the lids on, tightened them, and turned the jars over.When I turned them all right-side-up after they were cooled, all but one had sealed. When I got up the next morning, that 12th jar was sealed too.

Of course, now comes the hard part. We have to wait three months for the beans to really pickle before we eat any.

Dilly Beans
For each pint jar of beans, place the following in the bottom of the jar:
1-1/2 T dill seed
1/2 t mustard seed
1/8 t powdered alum
4 cloves garlic
1 sprig dill weed

Brine for all jars:
3 quarts water
1-1/2 quarts apple cider vinegar (not apple cider flavored vinegar)
1 C pickling salt (the green box if you're getting Morton's)

Sterilize jars. Place flat lids in boiling water. Bring brine to a simmer and leave on the stove as you pack the jars. Fill each jar with ingredients, packing the beans as tightly as you can and ensuring that all beans are 1/2-3/4 inch below the top of the jar. Also, make sure that dill does not poke out of the jar. Pour brine in until the jar is filled to within 1/2 inch of the top of the jar. place flat lid on jar and put ring on tightly. Turn jars upside-down to cool. After cooled, turn right-side-up and store for three months while the beans pickle.

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