What do you do with a glut of snap beans and cauliflower? Why add a few freshly pulled carrots and some languishing summer squash and make sweet summer pickles. These mark the end of our non-cucumber pickles for the year as the tally has gotten a bit ridiculous. It’s going to take us two years to work our way through what I’ve already made of the odd ball pickles.
The tally stands at:
- 6 quarts of asparagus pickles (4 left)
- 12 pints of Dilly Beans
- 5 half pints and 4 12-ounce jelly jars of Pickled Onions
- 13 pints of Summer Garden pickles
Add that to the 30 quarts of various kinds of dill and bread n butter pickles we’re planning to make and we’ll be well vinegared for a while. Here are recipes for last weekends’ dilly beans and pickled onions as well as yesterday’s summer garden pickles. All are from the Joy of Cooking canning book.
makes 6 pint jars
3 pounds fresh snap beans
4 springs of fresh dill per jar, or 2.5 Tbs dill seeds per jar
1 clove peeled garlic per jar
1 tsp red pepper flakes per jar
Top and trim the beans to 4″. Put dill, garlic and pepper into hot sterile jars. Tightly pack the beans upright into the jars. While doing so, bring to a boil in a saucepan:
3 cups white vinegar
3 cups water
6 Tbs pickling salt
Pour the hot vinegar into the jars, leaving 1/2″ of headspace. Process in a hot water bath canner for 5 minutes.
Pickled Onion Rings
Makes six 1/2 pint jars
2 pounds red onions up to 2.5 inches wide, cut into 1/4″ rings
1 large bay leaf
2 large cloves of peeled, crushed garlic
Combine the following ingredients in a deep skillet and bring to a boil, stirring constantly until the sugar is dissolved.
2-2/3 cups cider vinegar
1/3 cup bottled lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar
3/4 tsp salt
Stir constantly until sugar is dissolved. Add the onions and spices (tie into a bag if you’d like, I didn’t). Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often. Discard the spice bag (or just the bay leaf if you didn’t use a bag). Pack the onions into hot sterile jars and top off with brine leaving 1/2″ headspace. Process in a hot water bath canner for 10 minutes.
Summer Garden Pickles
Makes 6 pint jars
I made a deviation from the recipe as it was written, my noted changes are included. I omitted the corn, bell pepper and pearl onions as we didn’t have a glut of them. If you’re not comfortable making substitutions, you should follow the recipe exactly.
4 medium ears yellow corn boiled for 5 minutes and cut off the cob (omitted)
1 pound young zucchini cut into 1/4″ slices (included)
8 ounces green beans in 2″ pieces (I used 1 pound)
8 ounces cauliflower cut into 1″ florets (I used 1 pound)
8 ounces young carrots, cut into 1/4″ rounds (I used 1 pound)
8 ounces bell pepper cut into 2″x1/2″ strips (omitted)
8 ounces pearl onions, washed and peeled (omitted)
The recipe calls for brining the vegetables in 8 cups of water and 1/2 cup of salt for 12 to 18 hours. Then you pour off the water but don’t rinse the veggies. I skipped this step because I didn’t have time. Instead I salted the vegetables and let them rest for 2 hours.
Combine in a large deep skillet and bring to a boil for 3 minutes the following:
3 cups cider vinegar
3 cups white vinegar
1/4 cup bottled lemon juice
2 cups sugar
2 Tbs celery seeds
1 Tbs red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp tumeric
Then add the veggies along with 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil and simmer until thoroughly hot. I skipped this in the interest of keeping my veggies crisp. I’m not sure if it worked yet.
Then pack the veggies into hot jars and add brine leaving 1/2″ headspace. Process in a hot water bath canner for 15 minutes.
I’m a bit of a renegade when it comes to pickling, believing that as long as my jars are sterile and the ratio of vinegar is high that there is room for improvisation. This is not a USDA recommended approach.