Tuesday, October 16, 2007

beans 'n' peppers

Last week my aunt called to tell me that she had left some farm-stand vegetables for me at her country house, not too far from where I live. So I went to pick them up, and found a bounty of broccoli, red bell peppers, green beans, and brussel sprouts. What to do? I couldn't eat it all by myself before it went bad, so enter two beautiful things: eating with friends, and saving some for later. The broccoli went into a salad that I shared with two fellow grad students. The peppers I roasted and froze.



And today, I finally got around to making what my big brother has been requesting for a couple of years now: dilly beans! Just two jars' worth, but that's enough for him and for someone else (although I'm sure he'd happily take both jars), and it was easy, quick, and fun to do.

Here's the recipe I used:

1 pound fresh green beans, washed and trimmed
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 Tblsp. dried dill
2 dried red chili peppers, with seeds, chopped
1 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 cups water
2 Tblsp. salt
2 pint jars with seal lids

Prepare jars by washing in hot detergent and then sterilizing in a boiling-water bath. While the jars are in the bath, boil the water, vinegar, and salt together in a non-reactive saucepan. Remove jars from bath, put one garlic clove, 1 Tblsp. of dill, and one chopped chili pepper in each jar, then pack the green beans upright, half in each jar. Pour boiling vinegar-water mix over the beans, leaving 1/4 inch of head space at the top of each jar. Seal and process the jars in a boiling-water bath for 5 minutes. Store for at least 2 weeks in a cool, dark place before eating. Serve cold from the refrigerator.

Of course I can't testify yet to how well they turn out, but I'll append the post once they've been tried!

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