Harvesting and Using Green Beans

Harvesting and Using Green Beans
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There are many types of beans that are eaten fresh - including snap beans, runner beans, Italian green beans, Chinese long beans, and wax beans. Today we're talking about types of beans you can eat fresh without shelling.
Pick beans when they are about the thickness of a pencil or a little thinner. They'll snap easily in two when ready. Don't wait till they are bulging..they'll be tough. Harvest every couple of days and they'll keep producing most of the summer. Harvest gently, and don't pull too roughly on the beans when picking.

You can store fresh unwashed beans in the refrigerator for up to five days stored in a plastic bag or container. Before cooking, rinse the beans and snap off the ends after running under cold water. They can be quickly frozen, if first blanched in boiling water, rinsed with cold water, drained and placed in a freezer container.

I make fresh green beans by boiling them in just enough water to cover til crisp tender. I drain them and add to a skillet with salt, pepper and a couple tablespoons of herb vinegar. I cook til most of the vinegar is gone and serve. They turn out tangy and seasoned just right.

Easy Marinated Italian Beans


1 1/2 pounds fresh green beans

3/4 cups water

2 cups prepared Italian salad dressing

1/2 cup lemon juice

2 tablespoons herb vinegar

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/8 teaspoon dried oregano

2 crushed garlic cloves

Wash the beans, trim the ends and remove any strings. Cover with water in a sauce pan and cook until crisp tender. About 10-15 minutes. Combine dressing and next 6 ingredients in a small bowl, whisking well. Pour dressing over beans; cover and refrigerate 6-8 hours. Serves 6.

Green Bean Salad


2 pounds snap beans, 3 inch lengths, ends trimmed

boiling water, lightly salted


1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced

1/4 cup white wine or herb vinegar

1/2 cup olive oil

1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely minced

3/4 teaspoon sugar

Cook the snap beans in lightly salted boiling water just until tender, about 10 to 12 minutes. Drain in a colander and cool for about 10 minutes. In a large bowl combine the beans and the dressing ingredients. Mix gently. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Mix again just before serving.

Mediterranean Bean Salad


1 1/2 lbs. green beans

1 clove garlic

Salt and pepper to taste

4-6 tbsp. lemon juice

1 small onion, finely chopped

2 tbsp. finely chopped parsley

4-6 tbsp. olive oil

Wash and snap beans, cut into two inch lengths. Cook in salted water until crisp tender. Mash garlic and salt - add lemon juice and mix well. Add other ingredients and toss. Best refrigerated at least an hour before serving. Tomatoes may be added as well.

Creamy Green Bean Salad



3 pounds green beans

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/3 cup herb vinegar

1/4 tsp. salt

1 tsp. prepared mustard

1/2 tsp. pepper

1 medium red onion, thinly sliced

Heat green beans in a saucepan over high heat with 1 inch of boiling water. Bring green beans to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 5-10 minutes until beans are tender crisp; drain. In a large bowl or dish, mix mayonnaise, vinegar, salt, mustard and the pepper. Add green beans and onion; toss to coat with dressing. Cover and refrigerate 2 hours to blend flavors. Serves 8.


About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at Harvestmoongazette.blogspot.com.


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