Freezing Green Beans

 

Gather green beans in the cool of the morning while the shadows are long. Select young tender unblemished pods. Discard any pods which are over mature. Picking off the mature pods will keep your bean bushes producing. Sit down on a garden bench and rest from time to time. Gardening should be enjoyable. Continue picking until the beans are collected. Wash the freshly picked pods in cold water to remove any sand or dirt. Sit down under the shade and snap the beans into bite size links.

 

Water blanch the beans for 3 minutes: Fill a large pot half way with water and put it on the stove to boil. Meanwhile pack the green beans loosely in a sack. I have used an old pillow case, cotton cheese cloth or a nylon potato sack for this purpose. Then clean the kitchen sink and fill it with cold water. Once the water in the pot has come to a rolling boil dip the sack of beans into the hot water for 3 minutes. Watch the clock it is important not to under-cook or over-cook the beans. The beans will change from dark green to bright green. When the time is up take them out of the hot water and plunge them into the cold water in your sink. Stir them around so that they quickly becomes cool. Once the beans are cooled put them into a colander to drain. Put the beans into plastic freezer bags press out the air, twist the end and knot it, then flatten the bags and lay them onto a freezer shelf. By the way, I keep a couple of plastic water bottles of frozen water in my freezer. I slip them into the water in the sink between batches to cool the water down again so that I can use the same water for cooling the next batch.

For more information about preserving food visit the National Center for Home Food Preservation.

Picking beans in the garden

Resting on our garden bench

 

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