Towards the end of the fall season beans and greens can sometimes have a more fibrous texture as the plants respond to the change in weather. Comfort-food cooking methods that have more liquid and a longer cooking time are great for late-season vegetables like these. It may not be trendy to boil vegetables, but some of the traditional methods of braising or simmering greens and beans come from centuries of eating seasonally and finding ways to enjoy everything the crops have to offer. Braising or boiling does not have to be bland. If you are looking for the right spice blend to give some kick to your late season greens and beans, the ladies at Seasonest in Atlanta have developed a line of seasoning blends made from fresh, organic, non-GMO, gluten-free ingredients. The Soul Food blend was perfected by their father who wanted more of the traditional flavors without the additives, preservatives, and sodium commonly found in seasoning blends. Their line of all-natural seasoning and spice blends are available at many Whole Foods and Fresh Market locations in Georgia and South Carolina, as well as the Chattanooga Market, or online through the Seasonest website.
1 lb Asian long green beans
1/4 lb bacon
1 Tbs Seasonest Soul Food seasoning
2 cups water
Pickled banana peppers and soft boiled or poached eggs for garnish (optional)
Trim the long beans to your desired length, then set aside. Cut the bacon into 1 inch pieces then fry it in a heavy bottomed braising skillet or saucepan large enough to hold the volume of the beans. When the bacon is cooked, drain off any excess fat (but leave enough for sauteing the beans). Then add the beans and seasoning and saute for a few minutes. Add the water and cover the pan with a lid. Let the liquid come to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until the beans are as tender as you like them.
Add more seasoning and salt to taste, then serve with pickled banana peppers and a soft boiled egg.