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Old 11-05-2009, 12:29 PM   #1
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Has anyone tried salting green beans?

I've heard this is the best way of preserving green beans because they keep most of their original texture. I've blanched/frozen green beans before and I really don't like how they turn out so I was looking for another way to preserve them.

There's not a ton of info on the web about it. It looks like there's a couple ways to do it, like immersing in a salt brine vs. packing in salt directly. I'd like to try the method of dry packing in salt and letting a brine form on it's own. I'm not sure if you need to slice the beans first; I've seen recipes saying both slice and leave whole. And most recipes I've seen say use about 1 lb of coarse salt for 3 lbs of beans.

I really like to salt packing method because you can just keep adding more layers to the crock as you harvest more beans (I'm only getting about a handful per day right now).

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Old 11-05-2009, 01:56 PM   #2
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No, but it does sound interesting from reading this ... but something I would never try because of the high sodium that rinsing and soaking will not remove before cooking.

I have no problem with the color or texture of frozen green beans - blanch for 3 minutes in boiling water then toss into ice water until cold, then drain, pat dry and reeze in heavy duty vacuum bags (foodsaver or handivac).
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Old 11-05-2009, 11:07 PM   #3
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Well, that's the same technique I've used as far as the blanching is concerned. Mine always end up kinda mushy once they're cooked (and I place them in the cook pot without thawing first which I've heard is better).

I guess I'll just have to do a little experimenting with the salting. I started a small batch today so I'll see how it goes. I ended up slicing the beans in half and I probably am using more salt than necessary
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Old 11-06-2009, 10:20 AM   #4
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Before canning was invented, people preserved food in several ways. Drying, bleaching and even burying food were common ways. Salt-curing was another means of preserving food. This method added variety of taste and texture to the diet. Huge barrels were used in the old days.

Know that the method of salt-curing is often referred to as "pickling." A solution of brine is made to soak the food in. Brine is simply water that has been saturated with salt, much like the ocean. Beans, cabbage, cucumbers and beets are all good vegetables for salt-curing. In the old days, people would use 50 to 60 gallon-sized barrels. They would use the barrels for salt-curing and just leave the food in the barrel to store through the winter. The barrel would be covered with a board cut to fit and held down by rocks.
Cut your vegetables up in pieces before you put them in the salt water to preserve food by salt-curing. As you chop a vegetable and put it into the salt water, it makes its own juice. Nowadays, you might want to use a smaller container. Just make sure the water has plenty of salt added. Let the vegetables stand in the salt water for at least 10 days in order to "pickle." Pickle simply means preserved in brine. Then cover tightly with a lid.

Source: How to Preserve Food by Salt-Curing | eHow.com
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Old 11-06-2009, 04:07 PM   #5
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I never know what to make of those articles on eHow.com because I don't know who wrote them and the info can be a little vague sometimes.

From my understanding, when you place vegetables in salted water (like 1/2 cup salt to 1 gal water), lacto-fermentation will occur creating an acidic environment which is what does the actual preserving, and that's how they make real pickles. But in salt-curing, so much salt is added that no bacterial growth occurs at all and so it's the salt alone that does the preserving.

Interesting topic though.
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