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Butter Pickled Green Tomatoes

Butter Pickled Green Tomatoes/strong>

• A traditional Southern Recipe.
• “Bread & Butter” refers to the type of pickle – this one is sweet & sour.
• These pickles are crunchy, and great on a sandwich plate, at the holiday table, even on top of fried chicken! Though the job is spread over three days, making this pickle is actually quite easy and well worth the effort.

• 7 lbs. green tomatoes
• 1 cup pickling lime
• 5 lbs. sugar
• 6 cups white vinegar
• 1 tablespoon whole cloves
• 5 cinnamon sticks
• 1 tablespoon whole allspice
• 1 teaspoon whole celery seed
• 2 blades mace
• 1 3-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced into ¼-inch thick rounds

• Wash the tomatoes thoroughly; cut away any bad spots. cut into 1/4-inch thick slices. combine 2 gallons of water and the pickling lime in a non-reactive bowl and add the tomatoes. let soak for 24 hours.

• Drain tomatoes, and cover with fresh water. soak for 4 hours, changing water every half hour. rinse, and drain well.

• Make syrup: In a large nonreactive pot, combine sugar and vinegar, and bring to a boil. Fold an 8-by-16-inch piece of cheesecloth in half to make a square; rinse with water, and squeeze dry. place cloves, cinnamon, allspice, celery seeds, mace, and ginger in the cheesecloth; tie closed with one end of a 12-inch piece of cotton string. tie a loop in the other end, and slip it over the handle of a wooden spoon. suspend spice bag in the syrup by placing the spoon across the top of the pot. remove syrup from heat, add tomatoes, and let sit overnight at room temperature, covered with a clean dish towel.

• Remove kitchen towel, and transfer pot back to the stove. bring tomatoes to a simmer over medium-high heat, and cook, pushing them into the syrup occasionally, until translucent, about 35 minutes.

• Using tongs, layer hot tomatoes into sterilized jars or containers , leaving ¾ inch of space beneath the rim. pour hot syrup over tomatoes, covering them by ¼ inch, leaving ½ inch of space beneath the rim of the jar or container. slide a clean plastic chopstick or wooden skewer along the inside of each jar to release any air bubbles. wipe the mouth of the jar with a clean, damp cloth. repeat with as many jars or containers as necessary (this recipe makes about 6 pint-sized jars). apply lids to your jars.

• The tomatoes can be served when cool but are more flavorful when allowed to mellow in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 weeks. store cooled jars in the refrigerator; jars will keep in the refrigerator for 1 month. bread and butter pickled green tomatoes – adapted from Martha Stewart