Oldie but Goodie
It’s peak production time for green beans. If the two of us were to eat all the beans that I’ve picked in the past few days, it would be beans for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And you all know the tune: ‘Beans, beans, the magical fruit; the more you eat…”. Yeah that wouldn’t be so much fun.
Fortunately beans are a great choice to freeze or can. I do not have a canner and am completely intimidated by doing such thing, that I opt to freeze. I always use the same method I did earlier this growing season with kale.
But don’t forget to save a good pound back of fresh ones. I’ve got an oldie but goodie bean recipe below.
First you’ll want to find a comfy spot preferably in front of the TV to snap your beans. Thankfully Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations was on to make the time go by faster. I had big ‘ol grocery sack full of beans.
Once the ends are snapped off and beans are washed. Get your big pot of boiling water and big bowl of ice water ready to blanch beans.
Throw beans in the boiling water for 2-3 minutes and then immediately transfer to ice water for 2-3 minutes.
Drain the beans really good and then put into freezer bags and get all the air out you can.
I like to use the quart sized bags.
And pop into the freezer. Slowly but surely getting some veggies stocked up into the deep freeze. Good deal!
I promise these green beans are not like the pencil eraser things you buy in the frozen section at the grocery store. Fresh beans + blanching + freezing = almost as good as fresh green beans.
And for those fresh one’s you saved for dinner. Make good old-fashioned Pennsylvania Dutch Green beans. My mom makes these all the time for various potluck or family get together things.
I’m sure there’s all kinds of recipes out there for these beans, but my family only uses Grandma Doris’….better know as ‘Granny Great’.
Granny Great’s Pennsylvania Dutch Green Beans
3 strips of bacon, browned & crumbled
1 small onion, diced
1 can water chestnuts, sliced thin
1 lb. cut green beans, canned or cooked fresh
2 tsp cornstarch
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1 T brown sugar
1 T vinegar
If using fresh green beans, cook beans in boiling water for a few minutes until crisp tender (or your preference). Save 1/2 cup of the cooking water.
Brown bacon, remove and crumble when cooled. In bacon grease, brown onion and water chestnuts.
*I didn’t have water chestnuts, so I actually used the broccoli stem chopped the same way as in this recipe. Worked great!*
In saucepan bring cooking water, cornstarch, salt, dry mustard, brown sugar and vinegar to a boil. Add to cooked onion and water chestnuts. Then add beans and heat thoroughly. Stir in crumbled back and serve.
By far one of my favorite ways to eat green beans.
Perfect side for a classic summer meal….grilled steak and a garden salad.
What’s your favorite way to prepare green beans?