Lake Norman Magazine

The Great Green Bean Debate

Richard Rudisill

Cooked or crunchy? That is the questionfor fresh green beans anyway. It is very “posh” to blanch fresh green beans to set the color and the keep the texture crunchy. Then to be tossed in olive oil or butter, seasoned with salt/pepper and just warmed through to maintain their texture. Not so “posh” but the “old school” way to slow simmer them in a pot with a ham hock, a splash of apple cider vinegar and a touch of crushed red pepper is always a hit. But have you ever thought about roasting green beans?Roasting green beans is faster and easier than both the “posh” method and “old school” method, but taking an extra step of creating a warm pan sauce will definitely be worth the fuss. First snap the stem end off the beans and snap beans in half. Toss with a splash of oil, shake on some spice mix and pop the in the oven until slightly charred and starting to soften. Build the sauce, toss the beans, plate, pour over sauce and top with toasted cashews and you have a side dish for any occasion.When preparing the sauce imagine the possibilities of using this sauce for a host of other things, like steamed broccoli, roasted cauliflower or even pan roasted chicken breast. Find more great recipes like these from Chef Troy on his website, and be sure to watch Troy live every Tuesday morning on WCCB Charlotte’s morning show News Rising from 7-9 am.Spicy Bacon & Ginger Roasted Green Beans 1 ½ Pounds-Fresh Green Beans-stem removed and snapped in half To Drizzle-Olive Oil To Taste-Chef Troy’s Spice Mix- or kosher salt/black pepper 6 Strips-Bacon-thick cut style, sliced into thin strips 2 Tablespoons-Fresh Ginger-grated 2 Tablespoons-Apple Cider Vinegar 1 Teaspoon-Dijon Mustard 1/2 Cup-Chicken Stock 2 Tablespoons-Unsalted To Taste-Crushed Red Pepper ¼ Cup-Cashews-toastedDirections1. Preheat oven and skillet/sheet tray to 375 degrees.2. Toss green beans with a drizzle of olive oil and season with Spice Mix.3. Place on a sheet tray and roast in oven.4. Cook stirring frequently until slightly charred, about 7-10 minutes.5. While beans are roasting, warm a sauté pan over medium high heat, add bacon and cook until slightly crispy.6. Remove beans from pan/skillet and set aside.7. Add ginger to bacon; cook stirring, frequently about 5 minutes. 8. Lower heat to medium low, add mustard/vinegar and whisk to combine.9. Add stock, green beans, season with Spice Mix and cook, tossing beans periodically, until stock has reduced by half.10. Add butter/crushed red pepper to taste, stir to combine and melt butter into sauce. 11. To serve, remove beans with tongs and place on a serving platter.12. Pour sauce over beans and top with toasted cashews and serve.