I’m pretty sure I keep my local Trader Joe’s in business with the amount of frozen organic green beans I buy. I normally clear out whatever stash they have, and when I get home I chuck them all in my spare freezer downstairs. A second freezer was one the best investments I’ve made in keeping ‘backup’ real-food on hand. Firstly, if you live in a place where the cool weather months last longer than the warm, then fresh local-grown food just isn’t an option for a large portion of the year. A freezer is fantastic for bulk buys, like the beautiful Seattle berries I get in the summer for a significant discount when they’re so abundant.
I also buy 1/4 of a certified organic, 100% grassfed cow in bulk (all parts and cuts) from a local farmer and keep this in the freezer. This way, I’m never without a quick option when I haven’t made a plan for the next meal. I can grab some steaks or ground beef, defrost it quickly in a bowl of cool water, cook it up with some veggies and viola! A nourishing meal is served.
Buying grassfed beef in bulk is much cheaper than buying single cuts at a time from Whole Foods. I found my freezer on Craigslist for a very reasonable price – a worthy investment I’d definitely recommend.
But I digress, roasted green beans are my ‘fast food’ of choice and have assisted me through many cold, long winters. I am not a huge fan of buying produce that’s been shipped from far away lands, and even though I make the trek out to the Ballard farmers market (the only one that stays open all year round in Seattle), rain or shine (mostly rain!), there’s a good part of the year that there is not much in the way of local veggies at the market, so things like TJ’s frozen green beans are my savior.
So this recipe can easily be done with frozen green beans, but now that summer is here, I’ve got some fresh crunchy beans ready for roasting. I love this dish because it’s SO simple and you can prepare the rest of dinner while these guys toast up in the oven. I enjoy them plain with olive oil and sea salt, but feel free to get creative and add dried herbs, black pepper and a touch of citrus juice at the end if you like.
Emily’s Dietary Scorecard
|Gluten Free||Dairy Free||Tree Nut Free||No Sugar (added)|
|Grain Free||Delicious||Vegetarian||Low Sugars (all forms)|
|Paleo||Nightshade Free||Egg Free||Low FODMAP|
- Green beans (enough to cover 2 baking trays in a single layer each)
- 2 TBL olive oil
- Sea salt, to taste
- Wash the beans and trim off the stems
- Preheat your oven to 200ºC (400ºF) fan-forced *
- In a large bowl, toss the trimmed beans in the olive oil and sea salt
- Spread the beans across two baking sheets lined with parchment paper
- Bake for 18-20 minutes until beans are browned
- Serve immediately
*While the oven is heating up and you've rinsed and trimmed the beans, make sure they are nice and dry. You can do this by rubbing them in between a clean kitchen towel or a quick whizz in the salad spinner (the less residual moisture on them, the better they toast up)
(This post was originally published on my food blog in July 2009)