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Although I named this post after a simple recipe, it could very well be “How I Came to Love the Humble Green Bean.” Something about their texture just wasn’t for me. I’d made them many ways – steamed, sautéed, grilled… but I couldn’t get past their waxy squeakiness. You know what I’m talking about, right? They almost make a noise when you bite into them.
A recent trip to the farmer’s market, my favorite summer adventure, led me to give them one more chance. I find that making my way to different markets always lends a unique experience. Different growers, different specialities, different vibes.
Bushels of the green “snakes” were waiting to be preserved into spicy dilly beans, but I’ve never had much luck with that. Instead I took some home with the recommendation of the young man behind the table who said, “Blister them – not on the stovetop but in a really hot oven. They’ll transform from cold and tough to charred and crisp.”
I’ve found that more often than not, the hands that grow what we eat know best. The thermometer rose higher and higher throughout the day, but I trusted the young man. Soon I was cranking up the oven to let the magic happen.
As I could hear them sizzling and sputtering, I thought about the power of in-person connections, and how they will never be replaced by online/social interaction. Ever.
Hot and crispy, I popped them into my mouth, straight off the pan…….. And silently thanked the young gentlemen for convincing me that green beans could find a way to my heart.
To brighten them I added a splash of fresh lemon juice (tip: a little acid always brings out the best in vegetables) and dill. And for texture, crushed almonds were the perfect last minute addition.
So simple – five ingredients, one pan, lots of flavor. I know some of you are married to your traditional way of cooking green beans but if you’re looking for a new version, this blistering technique is a winner. And when you’re on your next market adventure, don’t hesitate to ask the lovely person behind the stall for a few tips. Their advice might just change your mind on some humble vegetable.
(video filmed by the talented Jennifer Simonson, who is located here in Minneapolis)
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I love how this recipe looks. I love green beans and the way you have all these ingredients paired together looks so delicious. Can’t wait to try it at home! I love dill too, so glad you added that too.
Is the oven 400F or C?
400 F! i’ve just updated to clarify. enjoy.
These are great. I’ve made them twice now!
hooray! green beans are cool again. :)
I love this story, Amanda! It’s so true! Our farmers know their veggies for sure. I find taking their lead in recommending how to prepare veggies has ensured success time and time again. It’s so fun! I’ve never blistered green beans, and I eat a lot of them this time of year. So I’ll be trying your recipe on my next batch of beans! Love the addition of dill, lemon and almonds… so simple, yet so delicious! Thank you for this!
Growing up I ate a Chinese version of blistered green beans with minced pork, chili, and garlic. They were so good, and are definitely one of the dishes I miss the most as a vegetarian! Blistered veggies are just the best.
They look delicious Amanda! love green beans cooked this way, so much nicer than boiling them :)
Made these the other night – YUM! Thanks for the inspiration!
Yay! so glad you enjoyed the recipe Jill and thanks for sharing, xo.
Well, I’m delighted to report that I have had amazing success with my green beans this year (err, my first year ever). Never would I have thought it possible, darkish thumb and all, to grow such an endless array of delicious veggies from our humble garden. But it’s happening and I cannot wait to try this recipe. You make beautiful food Amanda (and that bowl… earthy and gorgeous!)
Oh wonderful – yay for a bountiful garden! Some day I hope to have more room to be able to grow more of my own food. If you make the recipe, be sure to let me know your thoughts. xo
Green beans are a staple in our house. Everyone loves green beans, but we do need to jazz them up a bit. This recipe is perfect!
they can always use a little pizazz right? thanks for stopping by jennifer!
Will have the season’s first winter squash at the market tomorrow. Hoope to see you!
Dang, I’m heading out of town this week, but when I get back I’ll be sure to stop down and see you! xo
We’ll be there. Have a new squash for you to try too!
Beautiful Amanda! I will definitely be trying this because I am also not a huge fan of green beans, but I am growing some this year and they are about to be very abundant, so this will be a good way for me to start cooking them. Thank you!
This is my kind of recipe Amanda, and it is SO PRETTY!!!
so much good produce right now…. feels like not enough time to fully embrace it all! xo
I love green beans! Can’t wait to try this :)
These look amazing…I often do this and add a splash of lemon (I do it with asparagus too) but I love the addition of the almonds! I need to try that!
yes, the lemon always brightens vegetables! they love a little zing.
This is just gorgeous Amanda and roasted and grilled green beans are my favorites, I cannot wait to try these.