21 October 2010

Green Beans, Leeks, and Hazelnuts

I have really been trying to eat more vegetables ... in more varied ways! I find myself, though, always preparing them in the same way.  Let's face it, the tried and true recipes do 'get old' after awhile. So tonight I'm mixing it up a bit and trying a new take on green beans. The last of the fresh green beans have made their way into the markets and I couldn't resist one more dish. Next week, it'll be all about the broccoli, spinach, winter squashes, kale, brussel sprouts, and winter salads, but for now ... one last green bean crunch!

Let me know what you think ... this recipe comes from More Vegetables, Please! , a cook book written by a doctor (Haas) and a nutritionist (James) who are hell bent on getting the American public to begin changing their eating habits by incorporating more vegetables into their everyday recipes. Yup, they're on to a good thing. We all know we should eat more veggies, but getting folks to really change their eating habits is a huge undertaking! Maybe if we all begin working on making more varied and tasty veg recipes, we can help folks along that road to change.

I'm just sayin' ...

Green Beans and Leeks in Lemon Butter
adapted from the original

Ingredients for 4 servings:

1 large leek, washed well, and trimmed of the green top
4 large hands full of green beans, washed and drained well
1/2 c. fresh hazelnuts
1 tbsp. light olive oil
1 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. lemon juice
kosher salt
black pepper

Making the Dish:

1. Cut the leek into two-inch sections. Then, slice each section down the middle and cut the halves into wedges/slivers. Place the leeks in a large fry pan with 1 tbsp. of butter.

2. Trim the green beans' tips and slice them into two-inch lengths. Steam them until they are tender-crisp. Then, toss them in a cold water bath to stop the cooking process.. Drain them and set them aside.

3. Place the hazelnuts in a small fry pan with 1 tbsp. light olive oil, some kosher salt. Heat them on the stove until they begin to sizzle and are hot all the way through. Turn the heat off and set them aside ...

4. Begin a sauté of the leeks. As they begin to carmelize, lower the heat, toss the green beans and the hazelnuts into the leeks and continue tossing to heat everything. Add a bit more butter and the lemon juice and toss to coat. Add salt and pepper, to taste.

5. When the pan is steaming, turn the veggies into a bowl and serve immediately.

A niggling question ... What is the correct form of the following - 4 handsful ... 4 handfuls ... 4 hands full of ... 4 hands full ... or some other ? What?


  1. Sounds tasty. I'm always looking for new ways to eat veggies and given the climate in Florida and South Georgia, we have many regional "summer" vegetables most of the year. Oh, and it's handfuls, according to several listings on dictionary.com

  2. @ Kay - Thanks for that confirmation! It's been driving me crazy ... but not crazy enough to do my own research! I just needed an English language geek! As for the lemon butter ... we really liked the tang it gave these veggies.

  3. Vegetables are my favorite. the problem however is my families picky taste buds.

  4. I get stuck in "old reliable" ruts...same old veggies prepared the same old ways. This looks delicious. I love vegetables with a passion and can't get enough of them. I really need to change it up and try these soon!!

  5. I'm sure its delicious! I like my green beans with fried shallots and roasted almond slivers :)

  6. @ Indie.Tea - This cookbook has the almonds as an alternative to the hazelnuts, so your recipe is probably te original tasty one! Will def try it that way too!

  7. Over the opast few years Ihave begun to appreciate the versatility of vegetables. Even the ones I Used to dislike such as aubergines and okra are now making it on the menu.

  8. @ Mango Cheeks - Ya know? My husband and I lived in North Carolina for a while and learned to appreciate okra - in gumbos and deep-fried with barbequed pork. My challenge veg is brussel sprouts, but I'm acquiring a taste! I find as I get older that I have to eat more veg and less carbs ... I'll look on your site for some veg ideas! Thanks for stopping in ... come back again !

  9. I try to eat more veggies too! They are good for us :)


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