Get Pickled (Refrigerator Pickles)

String Bean Pickles

My fridge is starting to look like something from a mad scientist’s (well, maybe botanist’s) lab.  I’ve been pickling, and a plethora of jars of pickled jalapeno peppers, green beans and cukes greets me whenever I open up the fridge door.

Pickling is a fantastic way to way to use an overabundance of veggies (don’t look at me like that – I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s been at the market when the peppers just looked too pretty to resist and overbought) or give veggies a bit of extra flavor to freshen up recipes.  I’ve focused mostly on refrigerator pickles (pickles that are meant to be kept in the refrigerator for a short period, as opposed to canned and stored in the pantry long term).   The time investment needed to put up a batch of refrigerator pickles is almost non-existent.  Boil up a brine, while it’s heating wash and trim the vegetables, put it all in a jar and … you’re done.  Also, you can put up a small batch, answering the age-old question of what to do with those extra string beans that you didn’t need for last night’s dinner.

A blog that I’ve really been enjoying lately, Food in Jars, has a recipe for pickled string beans, but it uses dill, which I loathe.  My version, based on that recipe, has a few different flavors thrown in, including some smokiness from one of my favorite ingredients – smoked paprika.  If, unlike me, you are not lucky enough to have a cousin-in-law who sells fantastic dried hot peppers, use any kind of hot pepper you like.

REFRIGERATOR SMOKY STRING BEAN PICKLES

  • 1 1/4 cups white vinegar
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
  • 3 very hot small dried chili peppers
  • 1/2 – 3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 small onion, sliced
  • 5 ounces string beans -trimmed to fit in your can
  • 3 bay leaves (optional)
  1. Sterilize, or clean really well, a glass pint jar with a lid.
  2. Combine the vinegar, water, salt and garlic in a small pot and bring to a boil over high heat.  Reduce the heat simmer for 5 minutes.
  3. After the brine has simmered for five minutes, take out half of the garlic and put it in the bottom of the jar with the peppers and paprika.
  4. Pack the beans and the onion slices into the jar.
  5. Pour in the brine and the remaining garlic.  Pour in enough brine so that there’s just about a quarter inch of head space.  Since you won’t be processing the pickles, head space isn’t really as important, but you do want everything covered by the brine.
  6. Put the bay leaves over the top surface of the brine and screw the top on tightly.
  7. Refrigerate a few days for the flavors to blend before using.
  8. Store in the refrigerator.

Yield:  One pint jar.

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One Response to Get Pickled (Refrigerator Pickles)

  1. Jeff says:

    Hi there. Thank you for the link to my peppers. Always appreciate. They ARE awesome in anything!