22 July 2010

Green Beans ... Two Ways ...

Imagine,  if you will, a stick of  butter that has languished in the heat of a hot New Hampshire afternoon. It holds its shape, but just barely. The garden has given up a colander full of crisp green beans, waiting on the counter top. There's fresh 'butter and sugar' corn, peeled and ready for the hot water bath. A couple cucumbers have been sliced and are sitting in a rice wine vinegar and ice cube bath.  The first garden fresh tomatoes are sliced and wait for knoshing on a plate with a dollop of mayonnaise and some chopped basil. Dinner awaits!

SB and I have many a night when the produce coming from our garden needs 'tending to' and we do that by cooking it fast, throwing it on the table and enjoying it as simply as we can ... that means with butter, salt and pepper, that dollop of mayo, or barely spiced and tanged with herbs and vinegar. We have been known to drag the beans through that stick of soft butter and knosh them a la French fry technique! The corn has sometimes been picked up and rolled in the same butter stick ... a la red neck debauchery!  Talk about eating simply!

Tonight, however, I share a recipe for green beans from Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home ... that seminal vegetarian cook book (in my humble opinion!) that came out of Ithaca 's Moosewood Restaurant ... 

These are not your mother's green beans ... seriously! That  is the name of the recipe, as published in the cook book.

The beauty of this recipe is it's simplicity. Work with the freshest of beans, lightly toasted pine nuts tossed with just a bit of butter while they are still hot, freshly chopped Italian parsley and basil, and a good balsamic vinegar and you will have the nicest culinary taste treat! This recipe is a step away from SB's and my buttery finger debauchery ... it's simplicity of different level. Can you tell that I love this preparation? Go for it and see what YOU think... OR steam them up and drag them through a soft stick of butter! Your choice! My mother always said there was more than one way to the top of the mountain ... actually she said more than one way to skin a cat ... but that's just GROSS! An aside ... only an aside. Sorry!


  1. Yumm.
    Bittman recommends that you take that mountain of green beans when they are at their freshest and go ahead and steam them. Whatever you can't eat immediately go into the fridge. Then you can pull out a handful or two and saute them in a bit of butter or finish in any of a dozen ways for a quick lunch or side dish. Though I buy mine at the market, I always get more than I need for a meal and do this. They keep in the refrigerator after steaming for several days. Again, yumm.

  2. Aren't they the best of the garden ?!? SB and I lament the days of 'fresh from the garden beans' in January ... right now, we are enjoying every single one! I've made bean salad, steamed them, made the 'Not Your Mother's, next is a potato salad with beans and tomatoes ... the list will grow!

  3. Sounds like a wonderful way with green beans, almost like a deconstructed pesto, yummm!

  4. Hey! I never thought of that, but you are right, BrownieGirl!

  5. Oh how wonderful! Fresh green beans (nothing like it!) tossed in balsamic..yum! One of my favorite ways of fixing green beans especially for the holidays is with cashews, soy sauce and honey!

    But this is oh so good too!

    Thanks for another flavorful, fresh recipe :)

  6. Ooo, garden-fresh bean! I usually have haricots vert from the farmer's market...they are really thin, a bit shorter (supposedly french)...and I cook them in what I think is a similar way to yours...blanch in warm water, then into ice water, then with nuts and shallots and fleur de sel...
    I tried clicking on your printable recipe, it keeps erroring out.

  7. ... will look to to see if my download is incorrect... thanks for the heads up! Please come back again to the Garden!


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