Heaven on Earth

Heaven on Earth

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Garden Fresh Beans

A while back I picked my first crop of beans in the city, Kentucky Blue Bush to be exact; a whole grocery bag full of them, and I made a wonderful side dish with bacon, pictured below.  Then the garden at the Homestead exploded.  Look at the beautiful heirloom beans above that came from Spring City; they are the Royal burgundy and Scarlet Runner varieties that I planted in the kitchen garden.  I love the purple color on the Royal Burgundy against the scarlet runner bean (only the blossoms on this climbing bean are scarlet red; the beans are green as you can see below).

 The purple color totally cooks out and what you get is plain green beans but they are so pretty on the vine and in the garden, with their violet blossoms.  Even if you just blanch them slightly they still turn green. That's OK, because they taste great. I blanched them, sauteed some minced red onion, threw some cherry tomatoes into the pan just until they popped and splashed them all with some balsamic vinegar.

They were terrific.  The problem is...I have an abundance of beans, even after sharing with friends.  I have blanched, frozen, steamed, and sauteed beans.  I need to get preserving, but my family is not a fan of canned bean or bottled beans, even the home-canned ones.

    But something has to be done.  The two gardens are bursting at the seams with beans.   Try this great recipe below and then let me know what you are doing with your garden beans.  I need help!!!

 Garden Green Beans with Shallots and Bacon
1 pound of green beans, trimmed
1/2 cup of minced shallot (about 1 large shallot), or red onion
2 slices of bacon, chopped finely

Wash, trim, and diagonally slice the beans into pieces.  Blanch them in boiling water for 3 minutes until the beans are just tender and cooked (or steam them in the microwave).  Set aside.
In a large sauce pan or skillet, slowly render the fat from the bacon pieces.  Cook until the bacon is crisp and all the fat is rendered.  Remove the bacon from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.
Add the shallots to the bacon fat in the pan, and saute' until the shallots are translucent.  Add the beans to the shallots, and cook until the beans are heated through and the desired texture.  Put the bacon pieces back into the pan and toss all ingredients well.  Season with freshly ground pepper and kosher salt if needed.  Don't add any salt until the end because the bacon is salty.


  1. Hi Bonnie, I planted my beans late but they are coming on now. I will try your recipes. They look delicious.
    When we have eaten enough fresh beans I then bottle "dilly beans" also called cocktail beans. The recipe includes hot pepper flakes, apple cider vinegar, a little sugar and salt and fresh dill.

    P.S. the labels I left under your door, are for Kumquats? Don't know why I did that. Will make some for your Pottawatomie jelly.

  2. My goodness -- I've never seen blue green beans (is that an oxymoron ;-)! Your bean recipes sound amazing -- must try it.

  3. hi Bonnie

    those beans are gorgeous!!! can you believe the color cooks out, I remember the first time I got them so excited and they turned green.....sigh.....but its just a joy getting fresh produce this time of year!
    I am so happy that you stopped by and I got to find your blog!
    all the best

  4. Those purple beans are gorgeous! It's too bad that the purple cooks out- wouldn't it be fabulous if they stayed purple? Either way, they look great with the shallots and bacon. I don't have a garden this year, so I can't help you with your green bean problem. Do you like them pickled? My SIL used to make "dilly beans" with her extras.

  5. I found your blog via MacTweets. I was so excited to find someone else in this State who makes macs! It's always fun to find kindred spirits online. I also sew, bake, garden (landscape architect) and love all things crafty.

    Love the beans too! Have you ever roasted them? That's a great way to snack on them and it gives them great flavor with a little crispy crunch.

  6. Wow, the beans are so pretty...I never seen the heirloom ones before...so pretty...love the way you prepare them...SO yummie!

  7. You weren't kidding about the color of your beans! They are beautiful, and amazing. I'm always a willing person if you need a place to take extra beans . . .

  8. It's too bad they don't stay that lovely color!! I make my beans very similar - I add tomatoes too. Thanks for linking this to Two for Tuesdays!!

  9. Hi Bonnie, I'm so glad you shared this with Two for Tuesday, because I'm dealing with an explosion of green beans myself. I grew the purple variety last year, and was disappointed to learn about how they turn green when cooked. So I grew plain old green ones this year. Now I can see that the main advantage of growing purple beans is that they are highly visible when picking them!

  10. Bon bon, today I lamented the fact that I hadn't put in any beans this year as I looked at the sad crop in the store! UGH. Your recipe looks so good and next year I am totally growing some cause i want to try them and also make dilly beans! Thanks for posting on two for tuesday! :) Alex@amoderatelife

  11. What a bummer that the gorgeous color cooks out...but I bet they're still fabulously delicious! Thanks so much for sharing with Two for Tuesdays this week =)

  12. I do not think I have ever seen blue beans like this, fascinating. Shows you, one is never too old to learn. Thanks for sharing.

  13. You have such a bounty from your garden! I know homegrown is so much tastier than store bought. This recipe looks delicious! I love green beans to begin with, so I can only imagine:)

  14. Those beans look incredible, as does the dish that you made with them. Whenever I have surplus beans I blanch and then freeze them. I then use them in things like curries during the winter.

  15. Hi

    I’m your newest follower from the blog hop