Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Green Beans, Potatoes, and Dill

When I was little, I infinitely preferred the taste of canned green beans over fresh ones. I can distinctly remember that it wasn't a truly good day at my pre-school unless lunch had squishy and overcooked canned green beans as a side. Whenever fresh green beans showed up on a dinner plate at home, I think the taste and the crunch actually made me gag. As I look back on that now with a more mature palette, I can only guess that the saltiness and artificiality of canned beans is what made them taste so good to me, given that back then, I also eagerly awaited opportunities to buy Lickamades (purchased with change leftover from buying cigarettes for my daycare teachers at the 7-11, but I digress...)

Of course, sometimes it still takes a bit of sodium and artificiality to get me to eat green beans today, given my deep, dark, and disturbing love of green bean casserole. The kid in me still exists since fresh green beans are among my least favorite of vegetables, so you can imagine my sense of ennui when faced with 3-4 CSA deliveries of green beans. Here's one way I tried to get over the green bean boredom-- lace 'em with some butter and throw in potatoes as a distraction.

The butter and the potatoes definitely were the spoonful of sugar to get the medicine of green beans down. The crunch of the green beans contrasted nicely with the softness of the chunks of potato. Each bite was nicely balanced: creaminess from the potato and butter, fresh green flavors from the beans and dill, subtle sweetness from the onion. This was a side dish to the salmon in my last post, but since the dill makes me think of springtime, I bet it would also make for a nice side for lamb or some other Easter meal.

1 lb fresh green beans, ends trimmed off and cut in half or thirds depending on length
1 lb baby red potatoes, cut in half
1 small sweet onion, sliced thinly in half moons
1-2 tbsp fresh dill, chopped
2 tbsp unsalted butter, divided
2 tsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Put the potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and add some salt. After about 10 minutes, add the green beans and cook for an additional five minutes. The potatoes should be fork tender. Drain and rinse with cold water to stop the green beans from cooking.

In a medium pan melt a tbsp of butter with the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened. Add the potatoes, green beans and remaining tbsp of butter and gently toss until butter is melted, trying to avoid breaking up the potatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste and sprinkle with dill.

CSA Count: 3
Green beans, potatoes, dill

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