Green beans can be prepared in a variety of ways. The method you choose in cooking your green beans should be based on the age and thickness of the bean.
Super fresh green beans about the thickness of a pencil are best boiled and dressed with a vinaigrette or sauce. With older thicker beans, consider roasting them. Roasting infuses and concentrates the flavor of older beans while the fresh sweet flavor of younger beans is preserved best by boiling.
|Slenderett, Royal Burgundy (H), and Pencil Pod (H)|
Types of Beans
Green beans are eaten young while the seeds are immature. Yellow wax beans and purple beans are cooked and prepared just like green beans. They are best eaten fresh when the thickness of a pencil.
Haricots verts which is French for green bean are a delicate bean often used as a fillet bean. They are best boiled or blanched but require a shorter cooking time. They are a gourmet bean worth growing.
The old fashioned string bean had to be stringed before cooking. With so many choices of stringless beans I do not see a reason to grow a string bean. The stringless beans only need the tips snapped off and they are ready to cook.
Below are just a couple of our families favorite green bean recipes.
Roasted Green Beans
This is a great recipe for the less than prime green beans that are produced late in the season. Older, thicker green beans seem to have less flavor and the roasting seems to intensify the flavor. Any of your favorite combinations of herbs can be used.
2-3 Tbs of olive oil
2 fresh garlic cloves minced
1 Tbs. fresh minced ginger root
Fresh ground pepper
1 lb of green beans with end snapped off
Mix the oil, garlic, ginger root, salt, and pepper in a boil. Spread the beans on a shallow tray and drizzle and baste with all the oil mixture. Roast at 450. Turn the beans once. Roast until lightly browned approximately 15 minutes.
Green Beans & Lemon Chiffon Sauce
(Taste of Home June/July 2007)
My family loves these beans. The sauce is also good on broccoli.
1 1/2 lbs fresh green beans with ends trimmed
1/2 Tbs cornstarch
3/4 cup of chicken broth
3 beaten egg yolks
1/8 cup of Parmesan cheese
1/8 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup of butter, cubed
2 tsp fresh parsley
2 tsp chopped green onion
Place beans in water, bring to a boil, and cook until tender crisp. In a small saucepan whisk the cornstarch, broth, egg yolks, Parmesan cheese and lemon juice.
Cook stirring constantly over low heat until the mixture thickens and bubbles around the edges.
Add butter, a little at a time, whisk to help melt. Stir in the parsley and onions. Drain the beans and top with this delicious citrus sauce.