Monthly Archives: November 2012

Garlic Green Beans

Ration night.  It was a game that my great grandfather would play with my mother, and her siblings.  He wanted them to understand what it was like, surviving the great depression.  So one by one they would go into the pantry to pick their dinner, from aluminum cans that had their labels removed.  The can they picked would be their dinner, regardless of what was inside.  My mom would tell us how much they dreaded that night.  But in playing that game, my great grandfather taught my mom a mindset.  She learned how to appreciate what she had and how to make something from nothing.  In turn, my mother passed that down to us.  Now, we did not have to play ration night, thank goodness.  But in the way she cooked, she served as an example to all of us.

You can imagine that yesterday when I looked in my fridge, and saw the uncooked green beans left over from thanksgiving, I did not want them to go to waste.  I checked over my pantry and threw this together as a little snack.  It would also work as a side dish, but with the measurements I have provided it is for one hungry person.  It is not complicated and does not contain a million ingredients.  It is just simply perfect in its simplicity.  I do hope that you enjoy them as much as I did.

 

Garlic Green Beans

1/2 Lb Fresh Green Beans

2 Cloves  Garlic

2 Tablespoons Butter

Dash of Red Pepper Flakes

1 Tablespoon Dry White Wine

Lemon Juice, salt and pepper to Taste

 

1. Melt butter in a saute pan over medium/low heat, when melted add the green beans.

2.  Allow them to cook for about 2-3 minutes, and then add in the red pepper flakes and garlic.

3. Cook for a few more minutes (approx 2) , the time will vary depending on your stove.  Ultimately you want the green beans to be tender crisp.

4. Add the white wine and allow the alcohol to cook off, it will reduce by 3/4ths.  Then take off the heat.

5. Finish salt, pepper and lemon juice.

This recipe is very customizable, taste as you go along.  If you like more garlic or more heat, do it!!

 


Green Soup

Ok first off, no matter how many pictures I take of this soup, it will not look pretty.  It is green and delicious and feeds your soul with love and superfoods, but pretty it is not.   But there is a story behind this soup.  Considering this is my first post I wanted it to say something about me.  And this green soup says something about me.  It goes back to when I was in third grade.  My family and I were living in Florida with my grandparents- Mammie and Poppy.  I was in the living room reading and Poppy was in the kitchen singing, which meant that he was cooking.  On this particular day he was making soup.  I came in to the kitchen in time for him to ask me to sit and eat a bowl of the soup he had been spending all morning perfecting.  I sat with him as he laid out the crackers and brought over a bowl of beautiful soup.  Now, I do not remember the soup that he served because that is not what makes this story special.  It was the pure enjoyment on Poppy’s face as he spooned this soup into his mouth.  He would take a spoonful and close his eyes.  He would breathe in as he took a spoonful because he had polyps in his nose and he could not breathe well through it.  You are probably wondering why is that important, but it made him so human to me and it moved me to tears.  How that soup sang to his soul and how food is such a necessity to life.  Food is a language all its own.  And sitting there with him, changed my life forever.  I would look back on that moment and realize that is where it all began.  In that soup he taught me love, a language and a compassion for humanity that would mold the person that I am.  So this soup I dedicate to Poppy.

Green Soup

2 Bunches of Kale (Ribs removed and loosely chopped)

1 Large Sweet Potato Chopped

2 Carrots Chopped

1 Large Onion Sliced

3 Cloves of Garlic Minced

2 Tablespoons of Canola Oil

1 Cup of Chicken Stock

Cayenne Pepper

Salt

1.Put the canola oil in a 4 quart dutch oven and add the onions over low heat.  Add some salt to facilitate the caramelization.  We want these babies to be a caramel color, so this will take about 30 minutes or so.  To get them the right color without scorching I cover them and then stir occasionally.

2.When the onions are almost ready- add garlic.  You want it to become fragrant so let it cook for a minute but do not let it brown.

3. Add the chicken stock. Add the potatoes and carrots, then add water to 1 1/2 inches from the top.

4.Add the kale a little at time to give it time to wilt.  Then turn the heat to medium put the top on and let it cook.  Watch it so it doesn’t boil over.

5.When the potatoes and carrots have gone soft, like really soft, turn off the heat and whip out your immersion blender and blend blend blend.  If you don’t have an immersion blender you can do it in a regular blender in batches.

6.Lastly add the cayenne and salt to taste.  You want a little heat to counter the sweet of the carrots and potatoes.  Enjoy!