Pick fully ripe but tender green beans. Remove strings from the beans and snap them or leave them whole, as desired. Thread them onto strings by drawing a needle and strong thread through the center of each bean. Hang the strings of beans from one end in a warm, dry place, like an attic, or on a porch. When they are very dry, put the beans in cloth bags and hang them where they will be cold and dry, or put them in the freezer (which keeps bugs out of them).
To cook leather britches: Soak the beans overnight if desired; then cover with water; add ham hock or other seasoning; and cook for several hours, until beans are tender.
Rickie and Susie Patterson
This recipe appeared in my review book, The Captain Takes a Wife, by Doris Durbin. She stated this was an old family recipe from Union County, Georgia.