Simple and Wonderful Green Beans

Green beans are a workhorse of the vegetable pantry, and there are lots of simple, fast ways to turn them into a flavorful side dish. One strategy is to blanch and shock the beans, then sauté in butter or oil with aromatic ingredients, as in CHOW's Green Beans with Shallots. Try sautéing the beans with green onions and finishing them with lemon juice, or sautéing them with chopped nuts. inaplasticcup stir-fries blanched green beans with oyster sauce, garlic, and a bit of sugar.

Muchlove enjoys a Keralan green bean dish: Heat a couple of tablespoons of coconut oil and sauté thinly sliced fresh coconut and a couple of dried red chiles until the coconut begins to color. Add sliced shallots and curry leaves and fry a minute or so, then add blanched beans and cook until they're crisp-tender.

Hounds love roasted or grilled green beans all on their own, too. Toss them with olive oil, salt, and pepper and roast at 450 degrees Fahrenheit until they start to look shriveled and have dark brown spots (usually 15 minutes or so, depending on the thickness of the beans). TorontoJo preps the beans the same way for grilling, placing them in a perforated grill basket and turning them every 5 minutes.

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