Sunday, August 28, 2011

Bean Bounty

Now that the weather has warmed here in northwest Washington state , our vegetable garden is producing well.  In addition to all the zucchini and cucumbers, we've harvested lots of green beans.
I've taken some young, tender beans for a couple of dinners, but this was our first big harvest from the been vines.  I was amazed at how many beans we got from this 4 x 6 foot piece of ground.  This is the first time I've grown beans with a teepee-like structure, and I'm happy with how well it's worked.

In the spring, I used bamboo poles I purchased at our farmer's market to provide the main structure for the teepee.  My husband "planted" them in the four corners of the plot, tied them together near the top, then I wrapped the whole thing with yarn scraps for the beans to climb on.  Only the outer edges of the 4 x 6 rectangle were planted.
There are still many little beans in various stages of growth for another harvest, and the vines continue to blossom.  I  placed the beans in the refrigerator until tomorrow, when I'll start cleaning, blanching and freezing them.

My favorite way to eat green beans is steamed, just tender-crisp, with butter and salt.  My family prefers them cooked with bacon, or lightly oiled and roasted in the oven.  And of course there is the green bean casserole with holiday meals.

How do you like to eat green beans?  Any recipes for using up any garden vegetables would be appreciated.


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