Friday, April 16, 2010

Green Beans - the Budget Lunch
Don't you just love the ads for the .99 meals at those drive-thru places? Well, today I had a .99 meal.

Green beans were .99/lb this week at the supermarket. Mixed with some sautéed pearl onions, this plateful of savory greens was a winner. Granted, I added half a pita bread to round out the meal, but it was homemade, not only superior in flavor to store bought, but only pennies out of pocket, too.

I know that not everyone is into mono meals, or can 'fill up' on a plate of green beans. But if you eat the whole pound, it will hold you for hours. Lots of fiber, great vitamins (a lot cooked away) but it still beats anything from a drive-thru any day.
Wash and tip the green beans. Quickly blanch them in a large pot of salted water. Drain and chill down with ice and water to stop the cooking and keep them bright green. This can be done ahead (store the beans in a plastic bag in the fridge until ready to use).
Sauté a generous handful of frozen pearl onions in a tablespoon of coconut oil. Let them brown a bit, 5 - 6 minutes. Then toss in the green beans, season to taste with salt and pepper and a sprinkling of cayenne. Heat through and enjoy.
This makes a great side dish, of course, but a plate full with sliced tomato or a tossed salad is a filling lunch. Take advantage of the vegetables that are on sale each week. It's easy on the budget and offers great versatility on the plate.

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