Green Bean Recipes
Living in Southern California has spoiled me for garden fresh vegetables and a year-round growing season. Frost is a rarity, so I can plant a wide variety of vegetables and enjoy them in winter and summer.
Fresh vegetables can help lighten winter heavy meals and they add color and substance to stews, soups and meat dishes. This fall I decided to plant bush beans in my little garden. Having mostly eaten only canned green beans, I had decided early on that I didn’t like how mushy or flavorless green beans were, not even bacon could save them! But having grown other vegetables in the garden convinced me that fresh does indeed taste better.
I was rather enamored with the idea of growing bush beans rather than string beans, why grow regular old string beans when I could try something new? The lack of a trellis and the novelty factor prompted me to choose bush beans at planting time. Before I knew it, I had a small batch ready for the dinner table.
Bush beans are similar in size and shape to string beans, with the added benefit of not being, well, stringy. I decided to saute the first batch in garlic and then simmer them in chicken broth for roughly 15 minutes. Rather than being stringy and mushy, they were tender and packed with flavor, especially when I sprinkled chopped bacon on top.
For my second attempt at a tasty side dish, I decided to roast them. Roasting vegetables are by far my favorite way to make and eat vegetables and this proved to be no exception. Green beans are tossed with garlic, salt and parmesan cheese and then roasted into caramelized perfection. This method of cooking green beans has converted me to the idea that green beans can be delicious and a dish to look forward to!
So, whether you grow your own beans, get them at the farmers market or pick some up at the grocery store, let’s celebrate fresh vegetables with these two recipes! (Fresh, rather than canned, beans are essential to the success of these recipes)
I don’t make very many green beans at a time, so the following recipes are sized more for 1-2 people, if you have a family of 4 just double the recipe.
Drizzle olive oil in pan and add butter to melt in pan over medium high heat. When the butter is melted and foamy, add the minced garlic. Stir 1-2 minutes until fragrant and add the green beans. Stir the green beans so they lay flat in the pan. In a few minutes the beans will start turning bright green. Add salt and pepper and cook for a few more minutes.
Add enough chicken broth to cover the beans and stir. Bring it to a boil, cover the pan and bring the heat down to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes. I love using lid lifters to vent the pot, they’re so cute and prevent boil over!
Cook until most of the chicken broth has cooked out and served. If you have any bacon, this is where I love to add some delicious crumbles. If I’m feeling adventurous, I like to add a sprinkling of feta cheese to the beans. I love how the tangy cheese pops against the mellow and tender flavor of the green beans.
This is my absolute favorite way to eat green beans. Drizzled with olive oil, fresh garlic and parmesan cheese, the beans get crispy and caramelized in the oven and are topped off with shredded mozzarella. The beans are broiled at the end so that the mozzarella gets toasty and golden. I love using the Garlic Zoom to mince multiple cloves at once.
Cheesy Roasted Green Beans
- Jackie Miller