Country style green beans

IMG_5168[1] 

Tools: pot with lid

Prep time: 5 minutes or less

Cook time: Varies on cooking method

Ingredients:

2 cans green beans, do not drain

1/4 onion (keep in one piece)

4 turns from the pepper mill, or 1/8 tsp ground pepper

2 pieces uncooked bacon

1/8 tsp sugar

1/4 cup chicken broth or 1 bouillon cube

salt, to taste

Method: Put everything except salt in pot, top with 1/4 onion. Simmer on low anywhere from 1 hour to 8 hours. Occasionally add water if level is getting low. Remove onion before serving. Salt to taste.

Slow cooker method: Exactly the same as above. Anywhere from 4-6 hours on high to 6-8 hours on low.

Instant pot:  Combine all ingredients,  cook on manual setting for 45 minutes.

Variations: Browning bacon and onion before simmering would add extra depth. You can add some red skinned potatoes to cook with these, this is a very popular dish as well. If you wish, you may mince onion and serve with green beans.

For a very traditional feel you can substitute salt pork, ham, or ham bone for bacon. Omit the bouillon or chicken broth if you use salt pork or country ham and season at the end.

Vegan option: use vegetable broth/ stock and a tbsp oil/ spread of choice.

The next time you’re at a potluck, double or triple this recipe and prepare for accolades.

My family is from a tiny place in North Carolina.

We are descendants of farmers, hardworking people. Even now most of my family has a garden and cans their own produce. A potluck with my family is heaven. Most bring what they’ve grown, and there is almost always a pot of green beans that have simmered away with bacon for hours.

As a child my granny would always serve us green beans. The best part of sitting on her front porch, the wind chimes jangling, was snapping the ends off fresh green beans and putting them in a plastic grocery store bag. It was simple, but it was a reason to congregate outside and enjoy the weather and the clean mountain air. In the winter we would sit in her formal sitting room and crack walnuts, food always being a reason to bond. Even now when we call each other we will always ask, “So, what’s for dinner?”

I love these green beans! They are the highlight of the meal (and yes, that includes homemade mashed potatoes and gravy.) I will beg, borrow, and steal to get some of my family’s canned goods. I’m looking at you, Aunt Nancy. I’m in love with this Goya Ham bouillon for adding depth of flavor.

For some reason, my green beans never turned out as well when I started making them. The flavor wasn’t developed. The broth lacked salt. What was going wrong? Eventually someone told me my missing ingredient. Time. Not thyme, time. I’ve never been the most patient of cooks, but for these green beans, I’d probably wait a week if I had to. My husband always asks for these and if I have less than an hour to cook dinner, I refuse unless I can make them in the instant pot. Like meeting him, some things are worth waiting for.

See my recipes on Pinterest!

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