June 17, 2012

Thyme-Wrapped Green Beans

So admittedly, Green beans are not new to anyone. Yet, I've made them New Veggie #32. The reason is clear - I've never made fresh green beans before. In India, I remember summer days spent stringing green beans (not my favorite job!). So I never made them once I moved out of Mom's house. 

In the US, pre-cut, frozen green beans are available year round. So, I never needed to make them from scratch.  Last weekend, when I finally made it to Norman's farmer's market stall, I saw fresh green beans and wanted to pick some up but couldn't get myself to do so given the extra work that goes into cleaning and stringing green beans. This weekend, I decided I needed to '(wo)man-up' and get some. How bad could it be ... & to be quite honest, it really wasn't as bad as I remembered it to be :)

Prep Time: 20-25 min with fresh pods, 15 min with frozen beans

  1. 4-6 oz fresh green beans
  2. Thyme, 6-8 sprigs
  3. Salt, and pepper to taste
  4. Cooking spray
DirectionsPreheat oven to 425F and prepare a cooking sheet with a thin film of cooking spray. If using frozen beans, thaw the pods by running water over them until the pods and no longer frozen and brittle. With fresh beans, trim ends and wash the beans in fresh tap water. Once they're drained, sprinkle just a little bit of sea salt and toss the beans so that they begin to sweat a little.

Wrap springs of thyme a few beans at a time .. 

Place each bundle on the cookie sheet, such that they're a few centimeters apart.

Once done, roast the beans at 425F for 10 min. Remove from oven and transfer to a serving dish. 

My bundles fell apart as I tried to pick them up as the sprigs I used weren't long enough to be knotted. 

Garnish with a little bit of freshly cracked pepper and chomp away!! 
I served these with a small serving of a non-spicy version of HH Spicy Teriyaki Chickpeas. Yum! 

Nik's Reaction: His initial reaction was ... 'mom, I don't like bean beans' .. despite the fact that he usually gobbles them up faster than you can replenish his plate. Once I bribed him with a little post-dinner TV ;-) he was back to his usual ways ... he LOVED this recipe.  

Tony's Assessment: Me: Will you eat some green beans? T: Maybe, after I try 'em! ... and of course there was no stopping him once he did.                              

My Assessment: I loved it. Next time, I'll use more thyme and maybe knot the sprigs a little better. These tasted great but I think it would make for a great presentation if the knots had remained intact. Also, I don't think I even needed to use cooking spray. The beans had enough moisture that they would easily withstand a 10 min dry roast at 425F. Overall, this one definitely has a good chance of becoming a Gimme More recipe. 

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