(gluten-free, grain-free, vegetarian, paleo)
A frozen and thawed green bean will never be as good as a green bean just plucked from the garden, still warm from the sun. So finding new ways to use and elevate our preserved garden produce throughout the year is a necessity. Especially since Karl and I love flavor. We NEED flavor. Rarely will you find us eating just plain steamed veggies. Salt and butter doesn’t even keep us very interested.
You know what makes a green bean interesting? Garlic. Lots and lots of garlic. And onions. And salt and butter and olive oil. Now you’ve got my attention.
Having a flavorful side dish really makes a meal. Which is why I’m putting together a Side Dish Series: a collection of side dish recipes that go with anything and everything, are full of flavor and easy to make. Bonus points if they use up your preserved and stored goods from the previous year!
These beans are almost a little reminiscent of garlic bread with the same strong garlic flavor. You must use fresh garlic for this recipe- not only does it taste good, but it is incredibly good for you and full of health-promoting properties! If you’re not used to working with real garlic, buy a bulb and start experimenting.
This is my favorite kind of recipe because it is healthy, it tastes good, and it uses up our frozen veggies in a way that makes me excited to eat them. Plus, it is easy enough to make any night of the week, pairs well with just about any protein, and will bring your meal to life!
For this recipe, I cook the beans separate from the onions and garlic, and then combine them at the end so that each ingredient can be cooked in the way that brings out its best qualities. That’s the secret. It does make an extra pan to wash, but it is worth it.
Garlic & Onion Green Beans
1.5 lbs fresh or frozen (and thawed) green beans*
2 Tbs butter or ghee
1 Tbs other cooking fat, like lard, avocado oil or olive oil
2/3 cup chopped yellow onion
2 large cloves garlic, preferably grated (or finely minced)
1/2 tsp sea salt
Make sure the stems are removed from the green beans. I freeze my beans whole, and for this recipe I just cut them in half (the easy way- horizontally, not the long way). You can cut each bean into 3 or 4 pieces if you like them smaller. Steam the beans (I use a pot like this) until softened but still with a little crunch (for my frozen and thawed beans this took about 8 minutes).
*If using canned green beans, just skip the steaming step and pour the drained beans right into the pan with the onions and garlic to heat through.
Meanwhile, combine the butter and olive oil in a large skillet and sauté the onions over medium heat. When the onions have become soft, translucent, and starting to brown, add in the garlic and cook for a couple minutes more, stirring often so that the garlic doesn’t burn.
Add the steamed green beans to the skillet and toss to coat in the garlic, onions and oil. Sprinkle with salt and serve.
Make it a meal: pair with baked chicken and a simple salad with Maple Poppyseed Vinaigrette!
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