You may or may not be aware that I don’t like green beans. In fact, I don’t like them at all. And, if you look closely at our year of CSA pictures from last year, you’ll see that we got lots and lots of them (basically every week for three months). Usually 4-6 (even 7 once) pounds of them per week. We ended up with 16 quarts of green beans in the freezer. We hardly ate any of them – we basically gave them all away. They were our “party favors” whenever anyone came over for dinner!
Here’s an example of one particularly large green bean haul from last year. (I would like to point out that we also picked the majority of the beans that we got last year because we were working there every Saturday. So we probably picked these beans.)
This year, Nik said that we needed to plant beans because they are very important to the success of crop rotation. (They add nitrogen to the soil whereas most other plants use nitrogen.) Actually, any legume works but we already had seeds for yellow wax beans (bush) so he said that we should plant those. And although I’m not proud to say this, when he told me that, I started crying. Yes, my friends, crying over green beans. I was just too stressed by them (the processing of them I should say) and everything else last fall to even think of having our own supply of beans as well as what we’ll get from our CSA. I think Nik was (very understandably) a little taken aback by the sight of his wife crying over vegetables. So he very kindly promised that I wouldn’t have to lift a hand to them – no picking, watering, processing, anything – he would take care of them. So I calmed down enough to say, “OK – let’s plant them.”
And so, on Saturday we (read: Nik) started picking. And picking. And the picking continues. We have 15-20 plants over at our neighbor’s house across the street plus at least another 20 here. And the beans are descending on us. A bean hater’s nightmare. A crisper drawer at least half full of beans.
Last night, we had some friends over for dinner and Nik found this recipe for Cold Green Bean Salad with Pecans, Feta, Red Onion, and White Vinegar, EVOO, dill, and lemon dressing. And I have to confess, I loved it. Loved it so much in fact that I ate the leftover salad for lunch today and wished that there was more. So take it from me, the green bean hater, you should make this salad. You’ll love it and crave it.
And besides, don’t nuts and feta make everything better? (That trick works for beets too.)
P.S. In case you’re wondering, the “green bean crying episode” has turned into a joke for Nik and I. He’s out of town this week at a computer science conference at UVA and so I have to pick the beans tomorrow. And he’s already apologized to me for asking me to do that – which I very much appreciated.