How to Pickle Green Tomatoes

Chop your green tomatoes and combine them with hot peppers to create a relish. See more heirloom tomato pictures.
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If you're lucky enough to have your own garden, then you're familiar with the plentiful summer bounty of vegetables and herbs. Sometimes it feels like the garden will never stop producing -- endless bushels of zucchini, tomatoes, basil, cucumbers and peppers.

You eat, you make summer salads, you leave zucchini on your neighbor's porch, and you even do some canning for winter. As fall approaches, the garden's production slows. And once a frost comes, the remaining veggies will be ruined. So you gather up all you can before it gets too cold. But what to do with those pesky green tomatoes that simply refuse to ripen? Are they worthless?

Of course not. You have several choices for your green tomatoes: ripen them, eat them or pickle them. To ripen them, cut them off the vine and store them in a dark, cool box. They'll ripen over the next month or two. If you're looking to eat them, you just need a good recipe -- fried green tomatoes, anyone?

Your last choice is pickling, which will make them last indefinitely. Pickling is relatively easy, and you can use all sorts of recipes and spices to experiment with various flavors. Pickled tomatoes are great to eat with a salad or sandwich, or simply straight from the jar.

Read on to find out how to pickle green tomatoes, as well as some tips for ways to serve them.