Events and Celebrations

  • 250 g (8 oz) podded broad beans
  • 250 g (8 oz) French beans, each cut into three
  • 250 g (8 oz) runner beans, thinly sliced
  • 500 ml bottle cider or white wine vinegar
  • 375 g (12 oz) caster sugar
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons cornflour
  • 1 tablespoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon mustard powder
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds, roughly crushed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • pepper
  • 2 tablespoons water

Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil, add the beans, cover and bring back to the boil, then cook for 3 minutes. Drain and refresh with cold water, then drain again.

Pour the vinegar and sugar into a preserving pan, add the onions and garlic, then cover and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Mix the remaining dry ingredients together in a bowl, then mix to a smooth paste with the measurement water. Stir into the vinegar mixture and cook, uncovered, for 5 minutes, stirring until thickened slightly.

Add the blanched vegetables, cook for a further 5 minutes, stirring, until the vegetables are just tender, then ladle into warm, dry jars, pressing the vegetables down below the liquid with a fork and making sure there are no air pockets. Label and leave to mature in a cool, dark place for 3–4 weeks.

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