GREEN BEAN ALMONDINE

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1 lb fresh green beans, (or frozen green beans)
1 cup chicken broth, homemade or canned
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 /2 green pepper, chopped
1 /2 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons slivered almonds
Salt and pepper

1. Cut ends from both sides of green beans. Rinse.
2. In a 2-quart pot combine green beans and chicken broth. Bring to a boil. Cook covered over medium heat until green beans are cooked but still a little hard. About 15 minutes.
Drain the broth from the pot.
3. Add all remaining ingredients. Cook for 10 minutes more or until everything is tender and mix together well. Serves 4 to 6 as a side dish.
4. ENJOY! – Exquisite green beans done easy!

My family loves fresh green beans. All year round I prepare them the same simple way. My favorite method is to steam them until almost tender, and then toss the beans with olive oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Simple, healthy, and delicious.

You can handle Brussels sprouts the same way. Clean and wash them thoroughly, then cook long and slow in butter, salt and pepper. Only minimal seasoning is necessary.

The third simple featured recipe is green beans almondine, an easy and nice change as the winter months approach.

Canned vegetables were more popular than fresh or frozen when I was growing up. My mom often served the diagonally cut canned green beans which were, and probably continue to be, packed in water with some sugar and salt. Obviously, adding salt and/or sugar to foods really appeals to our taste buds, but it’s not the healthiest way to go. However, back in the day, everybody seemed to be serving the same thing in their homes. The canned veggie was soon replaced by the frozen veggie, and continues to be found in most home freezers. The great debate over fresh versus frozen rages on, but I will always have a variety of frozen veggies stashed in my freezer; who has the time to run to the supermarket on a daily basis anyway?!

As a working person, I can only do food shopping once a week. Occasionally, I go to the supermarket on my lunch hour or at the end of the day to pick up a few things. If I buy fresh spinach and I don’t need it for my planned menu within 3 days, I will prepare it ahead of time so it doesn’t spoil. Once I’m cooking, I take the precious opportunity to cook as many veggies as possible so I’m ahead of the game. Sometimes I have to work late and don’t get home until 6:30. By that time my husband and I are starving. It’s a beautiful thing to throw open that fridge door and see half of one’s meal already prepared.

As fall and winter approach I love to spend weekends cooking; the oven warms the house and makes the air so fragrant. By the way, and excuse me if I’m repeating myself, but try frying some onions in a pan just before your husband comes home. Odds are that he’ll think you’ve been cooking all day from the smell in the house. My first landlady shared that tidbit with me when I was a sweet little newlywed.

So, cook up some onions and get your honey’s juices flowing. While you’re at it, throw in some vegetables to keep the onions company and enjoy the goodness!

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