Ingredients for Green Bean Pickle:
- 2 lb runner beans, sliced
- 2 lb muscovado sugar
- 1 ½ lb onions peeled and chopped, not too finely
- 1 ½ pints vinegar either malt, white or cider (malt gives a better colour)
- 1 ½ tablespoons cornflour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon mustard powder
Method for Green Bean Pickle:
- Cook the sliced beans in salted water till just soft then drain.
- Cook the chopped onions in ½ pint of the vinegar till soft and transparent.
- Place beans, onions and sugar in pan with rest of vinegar and boil for 15 minutes then mix the mustard, turmeric, salt and cornflour with a little cold water and add to the pan.
- Bring to boil and cook for further 15 minutes till thick, stirring if necessary to prevent scorching.
- Pot into warmed jars but do not put lids on until completely cold.
A great way to use that glut of runner beans, storing for use until the next crop is here. Pickles and chutneys were primarily devised as a storage method in the days before freezing.
Most date from the days of Empire and the Raj when ships would arrive with exotic spices and sugar from the Indies. Few countries cuisine has changed as quickly and drastically as that of Britain did in those days.
Runner bean pickle, kept in properly sterilized and sealed jars, should keep for a year in a cool dark place. Once opened, keep in the fridge and try to use within 4 weeks.
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