Celebrate the culture of agriculture & share skills (Growing! Cooking! Eating!)

Here in Baltimore, beets are being harvested and the green beans are finishing up. It's time for pickles!

This pickle platter was made recently for a friend's barbeque. The chopped up pickles are great alongside meat and/or veggie burgers. They would also be lovely mixed in a cold pasta, potato, bean, grains, tuna, or chicken salad. Or hoard for winter and serve alongside a nice roast or toasted sandwich!

Original recipes for these pickles are posted below. Scroll down for the recipes, which were modified from recipes posted to the National Center for Home Food Preservation website. If you are interested in creating your own canning recipes and want to make sure you do it safely, the website Food in Jars has some great tips.

Essentially, as long as you keep the acidity of your recipe the same you will be safe. Disclaimer: please read official food safety instructions before you modify recipes! Even though it is more expensive, I like to use a high quality apple cider vinegar for my recipes. As long as the vinegar is at 5% acidity, which most varieties are.

BaltimoreDIY Summer Pickle Platter Recipes

Please read these instructions for boiling water canning before beginning. Or store the pickles in the fridge if you do not want to go through the canning process.

Pickled Beets
(click here for original recipe)

7 lbs of 2 to 2.5 inch in diameter beets
4 cups of 5% acidity vinegar (I like a high quality apple cider vinegar)
1.5 tsp sea salt
2 cups water
1 cup sugar (you can use 2 cups if you prefer a sweet pickled beet)
8 tsp each: black peppercorn, black mustard seed, yellow mustard seed

Yield: about 8 pints

1. Skin and dice the beets into small cubes or thin rounds. You can roast the beets and slip off their skins to get maximum flavor. I should do this, but sometimes I just cut the skin off the raw beets and simmer the raw beet in the pickling liquid to cook it.

2. Combine the vinegar, water, salt, and sugar. Simmer the beets in the pickling liquid, five minutes if the beets are cooked, or until tender if the beets are raw.

3. Place one teaspoon each black peppercorns and mustard seeds into clean jars. Jars must be hot and sterilized according to boiling water canning instructions if necessary. You can modify seeds and add slightly more or different flavors if desired (e.g. caraway, cloves).

4. Fill jars with beets and pickling liquid, using a canning funnel. Follow packing instructions for canning if necessary.

5. If canning, process accordingly. If not, let jars cool and store in the fridge.

Pickled Eggs

1. Hard boil eggs according to your preferred method. I like to put the eggs into cold water, bring the water to a boil for one minute, then let the water cool. Place the eggs into a ice bath or in the fridge overnight for easier peeling.

2. Peel the eggs and place into a jar of extra or leftover liquid from the pickled beets.

3. That's it!

Pickled Green Beans
(click here for original recipe)

4 lbs green beans
8-16 cloves garlic
8 tsp spices (black and yellow mustard seeds, celery seeds, dill seeds or heads of fresh dill)
1/2 cup sea salt*
4 cups 5% acidity vinegar (I  prefer high quality apple cider vinegar)
4 cups water

*this seems like a ton of salt, but it is copied from the National Center for Home Food Preservation website so I will go with it for now. If I find a lower salt content in a recipe I will update. I don't think I added this much using the Ball recipe, will have to go home and check.

1. Wash and trim ends from beans. I skip the step of trimming the beans into shorter pieces, and cram them whole into the jars after they are cooked.

2.  Combine water, salt, and vinegar and bring to a boil. Simmer beans in pickling liquid until darker green and soft, about five minutes.

3. In each washed and sterilized jar, place 1 tsp each of your spices and 1-2 cloves of garlic. 

4. Using canning funnel and tongs, pack hot beans into each jar. Pour pickling liquid over beans and follow packing instructions for canning if necessary.

5.  If canning, process accordingly. If not, let jars cool and store in the fridge.


Views: 683

Comment by Bobbi A. Chukran on July 11, 2012 at 6:23pm

That looks like a great summer meal by itself.   My grandmother always had some sort of relish tray with every meal, and it had deviled eggs, her homemade pickles, beets, etc.  Yum!  Happy trails from rainy Texas!  bobbi c.

The Earthly Gardener

Comment by Aliza Ess on July 12, 2012 at 9:51am

Aw, thank you for reading Bobbi! Yes, this pickle tray with some bread and hummus made for an awesome meal on its own :)


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