Tag Archives: preserving

Quick Pickled Green Beans

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.

Home Grown Dragon Beans and Wax Beans | Oysters & Pearls

The purple beans are Dragon Beans, and the others are Wax Beans.  They are beautiful and delicious.  As food should be.

Home Grown Dragon Beans and Wax Beans, Foraged Wild Garlic and Homegrown Onions for Pickling | Oysters & Pearls

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

brine ingredients
increase amount of pickling brine to accommodate your jars of beans. consider this a general ratio.

per jar
– 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

instructions

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.

Zesty Quick Pickled Green Beans | Oysters & Pearls

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.

Zesty Quick Pickled Dilly Beans | Oysters & Pearls

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.

Zesty Quick Pickled Green Beans Recipe | Oysters & Pearls

Until Next Time

2014 French Brittany Field Trials & Scenes from My Weekend

Happy Monday!

As you may have deduced from my Instagram account (if you’re not following me, you should be!), Wheat and I spent our Saturday morning watching field trials.  The bloodline that my family’s French Brittany Spaniels are from has a field trial each year, and it’s so much fun to see all the different dogs and watch them hunt.  I thought I’d share (quite) a few pictures with y’all this morning!

I managed to get a couple pictures of a couple different quail.  Catching them is difficult, so I was pretty surprised this one turned out fairly decently.Eastern Bobwhite Quail | Oysters & Pearls

The field trials started with the puppy division, which consisted of a single puppy this year: Ivy.  Now Wheat and I both have a serious case of puppy French Britt puppy fever!  But can you blame us?

Ivy, French Brittany Puppy | Oysters & Pearls

Ivy was absolutely precious and was pointing already!

Next up were the old timers.  Our dog, Louie, who turns 14 this summer, was the oldest of the entire group.

Louie, a nearly 14-year old French Brittany Spaniel | Oysters & Pearls

French Brittanys on Point | Oysters & Pearls

He did okay, but he is moving awfully slow these days.  He had to catch a ride back to the Gator.

Daddy and Louie | Oysters & Pearls

Then we watched all the other Britts hunt.

French Brittany, On The Run | Oysters & Pearls

Champ Backing Lizzie | Oysters & Pearls

Quail Wagon | Oysters & Pearls

French Brittanys, Ready to Hunt | Oysters & Pearls

This pretty pup is actually our Bubba’s brother, Pick!  The resemblance is crazy to me.Pick, A French Brittany | Oysters & Pearls

Natalie and Wheat, 2014 Field Trials | Oysters & Pearls

Natalie and Doc, 2014 Field Trials | Oysters & Pearls

After the field trials were over, lunch was waiting on us.

2014 French Brittany Field Trial Lunch | Oysters & Pearls

It was awesome.  Wings, smoked onions, sausage, broccoli, baked beans, cole slaw, yeast rolls… I definitely overfilled my plate.

After lunch, most everyone went back out and hunted the rest of the afternoon, but Wheat and I had a birthday party to attend!  Wheat’s grandmother turned 87 on Friday, so we met all Wheat’s dad’s family in Tallahassee for a birthday celebration at Z. Bardhi’s Italian Cuisine.  It was amazing!

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Mary Cate and I split a Caprese salad at first, then she liked it so much she ordered her own!

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In her defense, it was really good. :)  Then I had a seafood lasagna with goat cheese instead of ricotta.  It was divine!

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It was also REALLY dark in there!

Sunday I came into possession of a great deal of canning supplies and an old wooden shoe organizing shelf.  I put the two together, and I now have a very clean and organized canning cabinet!

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It was a complete disaster zone before, so I was really excited to whip it into shape.  Now I wish it didn’t have doors because I could stare at this all day long!

That’s basically what I was up to all weekend.  What were y’all doing?

Until Next Time

Dehydrated Lemons

Happy MLK Day!

I hope your either having a fab day off of work!  Or if you’re working, I sincerely hope that you’re enjoying a nice day at work, nonetheless (suckaaaa).  Sorry, that was uncalled for.

Anyway, the title of this post sounds sort of… dried up and boring, right?

As my regular readers know, and as I alluded to last week, I have been up to my neck in lemons this winter.  Not that I’m complaining!  But it’s inspired a little more creativity in what I do with all those lemons than just juicing them like I did last year.  I did juice a lot of them though!  I’ve found that freezing zest and juice is my favorite thing to do with them, because it provides you with endless options for the rest of the year.  However, I was banned from putting any more jars of lemon juice in our deep freezer, which perfectly coincided with my discovery of @anhaica’s Instagram account.  She introduced me to a new form of lemon preservation: dehydration.  And I cannot get enough.

Dehydrated Meyer Lemons  | Oysters & Pearls

Dehydrated lemon slices have won a special piece of my heart for being so gosh-darn pretty.   I mean, just look!

Dehydrated Meyer Lemon Slice | Oysters & Pearls

I can’t get over it.

And to make the situation even more serious, they are the easiest way to preserve lemons that I have ever come across.

Nearly two years ago, Wheat brought a food dehydrator into my life.  Or rather, into our new house.  And he hasn’t used it since.  It sat, relegated to a shelf in the shed, and I pretty much forgot about it.  Not once did I ever contemplate using it.  I guess I associated it with beef and deer jerky, and jerky alone.  When I saw @anhaica‘s dehydrated lemons on Instagram, I knew that it was a weekend project that had to happen.  So thanks for sharing, @anhaica!

Dehydrating Meyer Lemon Slices | Oysters & Pearls

Dehydrated Lemons

ingredients

– lemons (of any variety)
you’ll also need a food dehydrator

instructions

Scrub and wash the lemons to get them as clean as you can.  Using a very sharp knife, carefully cut the lemons into the thinnest slices you can manage.  Spread them across the racks of a food dehydrator, and dry for 10 to 12 hours at 135 degrees.  Halfway through, rotate the top racks to the bottom, and the bottom racks to the top, to get a more even drying time for all of them.  You’ll know they’re done drying when the flesh is a caramel-ish brown color and there is no moisture left.  Be sure not to pull them from the dehydrator too soon.  If there is any moisture left in them, they’ll rot.

Store in an air-tight container… until they’re gone?  They should keep for a very long time.

And in case you’re not super lucky like me and don’t have a food dehydrator hanging out in your shed, here is a guide to dehydrating lemons in your oven.  I can’t vouch for it, since I didn’t try it, but if you do, let me know in the comments!

Dehydrating Lemons to Preserve Them | Oysters & Pearls

I highly doubt mine will last very long.  I’ve been using one slice a day in my water.  You can keep refilling your water all day long, and the lemon just keeps on trucking!

How to Make Dehydrated Meyer Lemons | Oysters & Pearls

My coworker, Anne, said that while living in Japan, without any of their Christmas decorations, she used her oven to dehydrate lemons, limes, oranges, etc. to decorate their tree.  I can completely understand why.  I want to show everyone.  I want to tell the world.

“LOOK HOW PRETTY THESE DEHYDRATED FRUITS ARE!?!?!” said the crazy lady.

Dehydrated Lemons | Oysters & Pearls

Which is why I’m going to make you look at a gajillion pictures of them.  I mean, really, you’re lucky I stopped when I did.

Jar Full of Dehydrated Lemons | Oysters & Pearls

I also put some in a small jar and took them to work.  They’re the perfect work-water-pick-me-up.  Because we all know, some days at work, your sanity hinges upon the little things.  Like clip art in emails. And lunch.  And lemon water.

Jar of Dehydrated Meyer Lemon Slices | Oysters & Pearls

Okay, I suppose I’ll stop now.  But if you’re drowning in lemon juice like I was, I highly recommend dehydrating some of them.  Apparently they’re excellent in hot or cold tea, perfect for baking, and a whole host of other uses that I’ve yet to discover.  Any suggestions?

Dehydrated Lemon Slice | Oysters & Pearls

And I’m quite confident the age old favorite, “Put it in your booze,” is the obvious answer.  But guidance on the best way to do that will not only be accepted, but whole-heartedly welcomed.

I LOVE DEHYDRATED LEMONS.

Until Next Time