Pickling can be daunting to the uninitiated. If the thought of dealing with having to process all those jars in a water bath is intimidating or you are hesitant to make even a small investment in canning equipment, refrigerator pickles are an easy way to dip your foot into the brine. Lesson one: Don’t dip your foot in the brine. This recipe for pickled green beans, lovingly referred to as “dilly beans” will get you on the road to home pickling in my favorite way. Dilly beans are among my favorite pickles and this small batch recipe isn’t even the least bit scary.
This recipe for all-purpose “quickles” (quick pickles, natch) can be applied to all manner of vegetables, which comes in mighty handy when one somehow comes home with 25 pounds of carrots and not a rabbit in sight.
Refrigerator Dilly Beans
3 pints green beans
3 sprigs fresh dill
6 cloves garlic, peeled
1 1/2 cups white vinegar
1 1/2 cups cold water
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon mustard seed
1 teaspoons whole peppercorns
Cut or snap the strings from beans and pack into 3 pint jars.
Place 1 sprig dill and 2 cloves of garlic in each jar.
Combine vinegar, water, sugar, salt, mustard seed and peppercorns in a non-reactive pot and bring to boil.
Remove brine from heat and let cool at least 15 minutes.
Pour brine into jars to cover beans.
Cap tightly and refrigerate.
Dilly beans will be ready to eat after 2-3 days, but are best after one week.