I've given no quantity for the green tomatoes - since this recipe is for refrigeration, it's very flexible. It doesn't take as many tomatoes as you might think to fill a pint or quart jar, so you're likely to have leftovers. And even if you run short and your tomatoes don't fill the jar, it's okay. I prefer to use pint jars (or even half pint jars), and use more jars in the process, so that I'm opening just one small jar at a time, leaving the rest sealed and hopefully lasting longer.
For extra safety, briefly boil the canning jars and their lids and rings, and set upside down on a clean towel to dry.
Prepare the tomatoes and seasonings
Remove any green stems from the tomatoes, then clean and dry them thoroughly.
For cherry tomatoes, slice them into halves or quarters. For "hamburger pickle slices" using small standard tomatoes, slice off the stem end, them slice them into 1/8" thick slices horizontally (i.e., between the stem and blossom ends). For medium standard tomatoes, slice off the stem end, then slice the tomato in half vertically. Slice each half horizontally in 1/8" thick slices. (Alternatively, you can slice standard tomatoes into small wedges.)
Divide the fennel slices and garlic among the jars more or less evenly.
Optional: crush the mustard, dill, and fennel seeds lightly in a mortar and pestle.
Divide the herbs and spices among jars, pouring them over the fennel and garlic. Add 6 to 8 black peppercorns to each jar.
Pack the sliced tomatoes in to the jar, leaving about 3/4" head room.
Prepare the brine
In a 2 quart pot, bring the brine ingredients to a boil, stirring until the salt and sugar are completely dissolved.
Carefully pour the brine over the tomatoes, leaving 1/2" space at the top.
Wipe the rims and affix the lids, tightening to fingertip tightness. For the first minute or so, check the lids, and tighten again if they're loose.
Let the jars rest on the counter until cool. It's very likely that the lids will self-seal with a loud *pop*.
Label jars with the date and place in the refrigerator.
Tomato pickles will likely last as long in the fridge as regular pickles, thanks to the vinegar/salt/sugar solution. Keep an eye out for any sign of mold or off smells and discard the batch if you find any.
- Although it's tempting to use another vinegar, such as raw apple cider or red wine vinegar, I've personally found the flavors to be too strong. Plain vinegar lets the seasonings shine through with a nice amount of pickle pucker. - Even if the jars self-seal, the technique described here is *not* sufficient for unrefrigerated storage. This recipe has not been tested for its suitably and safety in water-bath canning, and should not be used as such.
Green Tomato Pickles was originally published on https://soupaddict.com/green-tomato-pickles/