I haven’t pickled anything in a little bit, but when Marc and Anna Jo brought me these beautiful beans, I knew they were destined for a jar.
The purple beans are Dragon Beans, and the others are Wax Beans. They are beautiful and delicious. As food should be.
I didn’t want to bother with processing these, since I only had enough for one large and one half-pint jar, so these are refrigerator pickles. And the recipe is improvised. But they were zesty, snappy, crisp and tasty.
Quick Refrigerator Pickled Green Beans
increase amount of pickling brine to accommodate your jars of beans. consider this a general ratio.
– fresh green beans, cleaned and cut to desired length
– 1 large garlic clove, cut in half (or two small, lightly crushed)
– 1 small onion, quartered
for the brine
-1 cup water
– 1 cup apple cider vinegar
– 1/4 cup sugar
– 1 tablespoon whole dill seeds
– 1 tablespoon dried red pepper flakes
– 1 bay leaf
– 1 1/2 tablespoons salt
Sanitize jar in dishwasher or in a pot of boiling water. Pack jar with cleaned and cut green beans, onion, garlic, and bay leaf. Bring the rest of the ingredients to a boil in a pot. Simmer for two minutes or so, then pour over beans in the jar. Cool, uncovered, until room temperature. Place lid on jar and refrigerate.
Pickles will be ready to eat in 24 hours, if you can wait that long.
I think I made it approximately 20 hours before I had to try them. They are everything I like in a pickle: a little spicy, very crunchy, and very pickled. In hindsight, there was no point in processing these anyway, because they aren’t going to last very long at all.
Guy Clarke once said: “There are two things in this world money can’t buy: that’s true love and home grown tomatoes.”
I would argue that home grown green beans, garlic, and onions fall into that category as well.
If you’ve been keeping up with me on Instagram, you know I was on a bit of a local vacation last week. We went fishing offshore with my dad twice last week and it was so much fun/amazing/exhausting/exciting. He took us out with Captain Jacob Tankersley (who we have known since we were little) on the Southern Lady. It’s snapper season (for nine very short days this year), and Jacob really put us on them. We slayed the red snapper and red grouper, scamp, some white snappers, a few beeliners, a king, and even a black fin tuna! I’m going to speed through two very full days of fishing with little commentary, but I’ll preface it with this: this was the best fishing trip(s) I’ve ever been on. I know snapper season is only 9 days this year (and completely booked, by the way) but if you’re ever in the market for a charter fishing trip with the best Captains and deckhands around, check out Lady J Charters. They are family friends, but also some of the best folks around. And like Lady J Charters on Facebook, too, for year-round jealousy-inducing pictures.
A quick note: Marc caught this 34-pound Red Snapper. That is INSANE, in case you were wondering. In all these Day One Pictures, it’s the GIANT fish.
Destin (holding our fish) was by far the best deckhand ever. He has been fishing his entire life in St. Joe Bay and it showed. He helped us out so much, was constantly working, and was a really, really nice guy.
Shark bait. Would’ve been huge.
Wheat and a Scamp. Good eatin’.
More shark bait.
Playing with a Remora. They stick to sharks, but they will also stick to hands.
Back to the Snapper.
Oh, and I caught a bonita, which just about killed me, and is good for nothing except bait. I had to include it just because of the trouble it gave me.
We cooked a super fresh fish on the way in. Chef Doc did a fantastic job.
Captain Jacob Tankersley and his niece, Lilly Jae, posing with the 34-pound Red Snapper and a Beeliner.
The whole gang – Captain Jacob, niece Lilly Jae, (Deckhand) Destin, and all six of us: Doc, Scott, Marc, Anna Jo, Wheat and myself – with a whole lotta fish.
This was my little cousin Cason’s first offshore fishing trip, and he was so excited he couldn’t stand it. Wheat woke him up (early) Friday morning, and Cason jumped up immediately and said “DID I EVEN GO TO SLEEP???!!” He was excited about everything that morning, right down to the buttered biscuit we got him at McDonald’s, which he declared the best biscuit he’d ever had.
When Cason hooked his first fish, he yelled, “This ain’t like a catfish, Daddy!” Indeed, it’s way more fun than catching a catfish. He tried holding it up himself, but it was too big. ;)
He was worn out before too long.
But everybody took a break every now and then. Just for a minute.
Cason slept until Doc woke him up to reel in whatever had just hit the flat line. Turns out, it was a Black Fin Tuna. It took Cason a little while to reel in (and almost took him out of the boat!), but he did it and was SO excited. It was so much fun to watch!
And that about did him in for the day!
It finished everyone else, too, and we headed back in.
Saturday night, Zach and Michelle came over for some freshly caught, freshly seared Black Fin Tuna steaks with Asian sauce, spicy mayo, wasabi whipped potatoes, and salad. The “Asian sauce” was new to me and earned rave reviews, so I’ll just have to re-do it and take pictures so that I can share it with y’all. ;)
After a leisurely Sunday morning with the house (and beach) to myself, Mama and I went for a bike ride all over St. Joe Beach. I made it all week being good about sunscreen, and the bike ride got me. Typical!
Checked the girls (aka bees) in Bristol on the way home, despite the summer thunderstorm. They’re doing great!
And then when I finallyactually made it back to Bainbridge, I quick-pickled some wax beans and dragon beans Marc and Anna Jo had brought me. Delicious! Recipe coming soon.
It was the very best vacation I’ve had in a long time. There was even more fishing, but I’m saving that for another post! Hope everyone else had a great weekend. It’s back to Bainbridge/Thomasville/reality for me, but I’ll be honest – I’m grateful to have a slow and easy week this week to recuperate from all of May. I have run myself ragged and right into a sinus infection this past month, so I’ll be resting up and detoxing this week, as well as sharing all my adventures with y’all. :)
I can’t believe it’s already Wednesday. I do believe I made this tangy shrimp salad last Wednesday, but I can’t even remember. All that I remember is that it was really, really good. Actually, all I’m craving are huge salads full of variety and colors and vegetables, as I am fighting off a cold. Probably due to lack of sleep and lots of imbibing of adult bevs over the long weekend in South Carolina… So I may be making this yet again this week.
This salad was the result of what we had in the house (as most of our meals are). We had shrimp in the freezer, we grew the lettuce and the bell pepper, the Florida avocado, the tomato, the green beans, and the red onion came in our box last week from Harvest Moon. I had a bag full of lemons on hand, too.
– 1 pound fresh or frozen shrimp (I used frozen)
– 3 lemons, thinly sliced
– 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
– 1 cup mayonaise
– the juice and zest of one lemon
– 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
– 2 tablespoons capers, with a little juice too
– 1 tablespoon dried cilantro (use more if you have fresh cilantro on hand)
– one quarter of a red onion, diced
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Layer shrimp over sliced lemons (and add salt & pepper) in a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 6 to 10 minutes, depending on whether you’re using fresh or frozen shrimp (it took 9 or 10 minutes for my just out of the freezer shrimp). Cool for a couple minutes until you can handle them. If you used shrimp that were not pre-peeled (as I did), peel them once they are cool.
In a bowl, whisk together the rest of the ingredients. Toss shrimp with the dressing, and use to top a salad of fresh greens, tomatoes, bell pepper, avocado, and lemon sautéed green beans (my recipe below). Or ya know, whatever you personally like on your salads. Use the baked lemon slices for garnish.
Lemon Sautéed Green Beans
– half a pound of fresh green beans, washed and chopped into bite size-ish pieces
– the juice and zest of one lemon
– 1 tablespoon salted butter
– 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Add butter and EVOO to a skillet and melt the butter into the EVOO over medium heat. Add the green beans, lemon juice and lemon zest. Continue to sauté until beans are barely cooked through and still green and crispy. Add a wee bit of salt and pepper to taste.
These are delicious served warm on top of salad, as a side dish, or on their own. They would be a great addition to a pasta salad, or any salad really. I think they would be a great accompaniment to a rich dish, too, like a steak with a mushroom or wine sauce. This is a super simple recipe, but with two fresh, high quality ingredients, this really makes a standout addition to any meal.
This doesn’t seem like a truly extraordinary meal, but gosh it was so good! So fresh and healthy (ya know, except for the mayo), with so many different flavors and textures. It was a refreshing break from rich Fall dishes filled with pumpkins and cream and warm seasonal spices. Wheat said it reminded him of the flavors of ceviche, which is completely accurate. If you like shrimp and/or green beans, make either or both of these. You won’t regret it.
And speaking of growing our own lettuce and bell peppers, I am WAY belated on a garden update. I’ll try to get one of those up this week! But it’s pretty awesome to be eating things out of the backyard, and I especially love having winter lettuces for salads. It makes up for the end of tomato season (although we have a few green tomatoes on the vine that need to get ripe ASAP).