From Cook's Country
We blanched the green beans for our Dilly Beans in salted, boiling water until tender, and followed that with a shock in ice water to prevent overcooking. The salt in the cooking liquid flavored the beans through to the center. It also helped keep the green beans bright green.
We found that dill seed, as opposed to fresh or dried dill, was the most pungent and aromatic—exactly what we needed to boost flavor in the shortened pickling time. We toasted the dried spices (dill seeds, mustard seeds, and peppercorns) in a hot, dry pan to maximize their flavor. After a few minutes, we added the vinegar, water, sugar, and garlic, and cooked until the liquid was infused with the spices. We strained out the spices before combining the liquid with the cooled beans—that way, we wouldn’t crunch on the spices while munching on the beans.
Makes 1 quart
For the best dill flavor, use dill seeds—not dill weed—in the pickling brine (see related quick tip, Dill Seed or Weed?).
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