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Deliciously Organic: My Favorite Green Beans

Deliciously Organic

A blog devoted entirely to simple, wholesome, organic cooking.

Monday, August 2, 2010

My Favorite Green Beans

Have you given much thought to the kind of salt you use? Salt may seem like an insignificant topic, but if you want to take steps toward a less-processed diet, it's something to think about. Basic table salt is first processed at high temperatures, removing vital minerals from the salt, then it's iodized, bleached, and mixed with anti-caking agents (examples include: ferrocyanide, yellow prussiate of soda, tricalcium phosphate, alumine-calcium silicate, sodium aluminosilicate). Iodine is an vital mineral that supports thyroid function, body metabolism and reproducitive tissue health, just to name a few. The Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) is set at 150-1,100 mcg a day. But the amount of iodine in a moderate serving of iodized salt is 1,520 so it is easy to exceed the daily limit using even a modest amount of salt.

On the other hand, a quality, gently-processed, sea salt can offer a myriad of beneficial characteristics. The only brand I've found that fits the bill is Celtic Sea Salt. It's hand-harvested off the coast of France, dried at a low temperature and contains no additives, bleaching agents or anti-caking agents. Celtic Sea Salt provides over 80 trace minerals, helps balance electrolyte levels, and helps balance alkaline/acid levels.

I prefer cooking with Celtic Sea Salt not only for its health benefits, but also because of its flavor. The grains bring a subtle saltiness and compliment foods better than any other salt I've tried. Salt makes a great example of the entire theme of this blog. I think you'll find the flavor better than table salt and your research will make you thankful for the health benefits of the change.

I also love offering unique ways to eat foods fresh from the garden. Years ago I was often quite intimidated by fresh green beans. I'd look at them laying there in a mound, bright and green at the market and think, "What do I do besides boil them?" After thumbing through several cookbooks, I learned that green beans can be given a quick boil, and then sauteed in oil and spices to produce an easy side dish. These green beans are crisp-tender with little bits of salty garlic, ginger and a punch of heat. Grill up some chicken or fish, add some sourdough, and you'll have a simple summertime meal on the table in less than thirty minutes.  

Green Beans with Garlic
Adapted from Perfect Vegetables
Serves 4

1 teaspoon sea salt
1 pound green beans, trimmed
1 tablespoons coconut oil
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
1 1/2 tablespoons fermented soy sauce (such as Nama Shoyu)

Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Add salt and beans and cook for 3 minutes, until crisp tender. Drain beans.
Heat a large saute pan over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add coconut oil and swirl pan to coat. Add green beans and cook, stirring frequently, until spotty brown, about 2 minutes. Make a well in the center of the pan and add the garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring continuously until fragrant, about 30 seconds and then mix together with the green beans. Stir in soy sauce. Serve immediately.


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Anonymous Kristen said...

This looks delicious! I love green beans, but am never creative at all with how I cook them.

August 2, 2010 at 7:08 AM  
Blogger The Urban Baker said...

these look delish! i pan-sear mine and reduce w/some chicken broth. yet, i love the idea of soy sauce. i am making these, this week!

August 2, 2010 at 7:13 AM  
Blogger Barbara Bakes said...

I'm going to go buy some beans and give these a try. I put Perfect Vegetables on hold at the library too. Thanks for the inspiration. I really need to step up my veggie recipes.

August 2, 2010 at 7:15 AM  
Anonymous Gaby @ What's Gaby Cooking said...

I make beans similar to this but with no coconut - and I love coconut - so I will have to give this a try!! love it!

August 2, 2010 at 7:49 AM  
Anonymous marla {family fresh cooking} said...

Yes, these are the perfect side dish green bean. They would be a great focus alongside my lean proteins. Perfect served hot or cold. Thanks for your salt lesson. Very helpful. I will need to get a hold of some celtic sea salt asap. xo

August 2, 2010 at 8:08 AM  
Blogger Gail said...

Yummy! I love fresh green beans. Growing up we always had fresh green beans and black eyed peas from my Mom's garden. Now when I cook them I not only taste their yumminess, but memories of Summer's past. Don't you just love that? This recipe looks delightful. Thanks for sharing!


August 2, 2010 at 8:30 AM  
Blogger Brooke said...

It's all about the salt. I'm a Maldon girl myself. It makes the whole meal.

August 2, 2010 at 9:16 AM  
Anonymous Kate said...

I rarely use regular salt, I just don't care for the taste. But there are just a few things I save it for, and that's corn on the cob and popcorn. Otherwise, it's sea salt and kosher.

August 3, 2010 at 6:27 AM  
Anonymous Cooking in Mexico said...

This looks really appetizing. I use coconut oil whenever I can to sauté vegetables. It has become my favorite oil. I love the flavor.


August 3, 2010 at 8:50 AM  
Anonymous Sue said...

Hi. Whould love your opinion on Real Salt. That is what I use currently. Thanks for your time!

August 3, 2010 at 12:46 PM  
Anonymous Kare said...

Ginger and just a bit of heat sound like the perfect way to prepare green beans. I usually go the parmesan and garlic route, but your recipe sounds lighter. And thanks for the education about salt! Checking out the celtic sea salt now...

August 3, 2010 at 8:53 PM  
Blogger Deliciously Organic said...

Sue: Real salt is a great salt with over 50 minerals. I've used it on occasion, but prefer celtic sea salt for it's flavor. Hope that helps!

August 5, 2010 at 5:55 PM  
Anonymous Sue said...

Thanks for the comment on Real Salt. I will have to try the celtic sea salt because my mom always tells me my pasta doesn't have any favor. :D

August 7, 2010 at 10:06 PM  

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