My son Tommy was gifted with almost 20 pounds of fresh green beans straight off the truck from Georgia. Tommy is a home school student who volunteers at a food pantry warehouse. He knows that the family is trying to eat more vegetables. When he helps, he helps BIG. I am so proud of him.

Little did he know that I’ve never cleaned more than a 2 pound grocery bag of green beans in my life!! I have a whole new appreciation for farm wives.I learned how to prepare farm fresh

vegetables today. I started with having my husband hose them down!!! They were too dirty and wet to take inside, so Tom set me up on the front porch. I felt very rural snapping green beans outside. Cleaning vegetables on the front porch is pretty out of the ordinary for our neighborhood. Finally one brave neighbor helped me out before my fingers fell off. She took home a few pounds of dirty green beans!!

After 2 hours of cleaning, cutting and prepping, PLUS 2 hours of cooking and bagging for the freezer, I now understand why farm moms ate a whole lot less than we do today. They had to stretch their time and resources. I spent most of my time while snapping those beans, thinking about how our great grandmothers prepared their food. Here’s my first revelation. If I had to catch, butcher, de-feather, clean and fry a chicken, I would be very content eating one leg. The idea of having to do all of that work to a second chicken for an extra helping of food, is motivation enough to east less!!

I never thought much about why people cook green beans with pork fat. All I knew was that I didn’t have a hog near by to butcher and bacon is off the meal plan. My Schipperke Shadow, who does look like a fat black pot belly pig, was sitting under the table. Like I said, I was feeling very rural. Now I know that they used pork fat to keep the beans from sticking to the bottom of the 20 gallon pot!!
I love my Olive Oil!! I NEVER EVER boil or steam vegetables. I hate draining the hot water!!!
I always roast my green vegetables in a tablespoon of Olive Oil with a dash of Kosher Salt. It’s the 1st thing I pour in a glass baking pan.
After washing and rinsing the green beans, I shake off the water in the colander, leaving them a bit moist. I then toss the green beans with the Olive Oil and Kosher Salt in the pan.
Four baking pans went into the oven at 350 degrees. After 10 minutes I pulled out each pan, added a shot glass full of water, about 2 ounces, to keep them moist.
I stired and flipped the green beans before putting them back in the oven for another 10 minutes. When they were still a little crisp, I pulled them out, tossed them around again in the pan and let them cool on top of the stove.
An hour or so later it was time for bagging….I really mean BED!! I bagged portions that work for my family in gallon size freezer zip-lock bags. I always flatten the bags and get as much air out as possible in order to stack flat in the freezer.
Thank goodness that I didn’t have to put them in mason jars with wax seals to store in the root cellar….whatever a root cellar is? We don’t have cellars in Florida. We have swamps.I now understand and appreciate my moms love affair with the Jolly Green Giant!!

These are the two green bean dishes I served with tonight’s dinner.

Roasted Green Beans with Slivered Almonds
Toss the roasted green beans with slivered almonds

1 pound of raw Green Beans
1 tbsp. of Olive Oil
1 tsp. of Kosher Salt

Clean green beans. Trim off ends and loose strings. Slice in smaller pieces. Put olive oil and kosher salt in a glass baking pan. Add the cleaned wet green beans to the roasting pan. Toss to coat the beans with the olive oil and kosher salt mixture.

Roast in the oven at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Pull the green beans out of the oven. Add 1-1/2 ounces of water. Stir and flip the green beans in the pan to keep all of them moist.

Return the pan to the oven for 10 more minutes. Remove from the oven.

Cherry Tomato, Green Bean and Parsley Salad with Garlic Balsamic
1 Pint of Cherry Tomatoes, sliced in half
1 cup of Roasted Green Beans, chilled
8 sprigs of Fresh Parsley chopped
1 tbsp. Minced Garlic
1 tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
2 tbsp. Water
Cracked Black pepper to taste
Toss lightly. Chill for 1 hour before serving.
This is one of my favorites.

Tip: You can switch the parsley with other fresh herbs like cilantro, rosemary or basil.

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