I tend not to post many recipes for frozen vegetables. I think I feel like it is cheating somehow, although the reality is that we eat a lot of frozen vegetables in the winter, mostly peas and beans, but also spinach, snow peas, and rutabaga greens. Here’s a simple way to dress up frozen beans.
When I say savory sauce here, I mean not only is it a tasty thing that is not sweet, it is also flavoured with savory, the herb. It has an affinity for beans such that the German name for it is bohnenkraut; the bean herb. Add a shallot, and sauce it in its own cooking water, and you have a fast, simple, and elegant dish of beans. You could beef (or chicken?) it up by cooking it in stock if you like, although water is perfectly fine.
4 servings15 minutes prep time
1 small shallot1/2 teaspoon rubbed savory1/8 teaspoon saltfreshly ground black pepper to taste1 tablespoon soft unbleached flour2 tablespoons unsalted butter1 cup water OR stock
3 cups frozen green beans in bite-sized pieces
Peel and mince the shallot, and put it in a small bowl with the seasonings, flour, and butter. Set aside.
Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan sufficient to cook the beans. Add the, and boil for 4 or 5 minutes, until done to your liking.While they cook, put a strainer over the bowl from which you intend to serve them, and drain them into the bowl when done, saving the cooking water. Let them sit while you return the pot to the burner and add to it the contents of the small bowl.
Cook until the shallot is fragrant and slightly softened, stirring constantly. Slowly mix in the bean cooking water to form a smooth paste. Simmer for a few minutes until thickened, then return the drained beans to the pot. Simmer until they have been re-heated and are hot through. Serve at once.
Last year at this time I made Lebanese Baked Lemon-Garlic Chicken. Would go well with these beans…!