The official start of summer is less than a week away, and many of you in warmer parts of the country are close to having fresh green beans in your gardens. Growing up in the Midwest, I can remember picking rows of bush green beans from our garden and watching my mom turn those into shelves of quart jars full of green beans that we ate the rest of the year. Mom also made the best Southern Style Green Beans–often for Sunday dinner.
While I dont have fresh green beans growing in the garden just yet this year, I often grab a bag or two at the farmer’s market or grocery store and make this delicious green bean recipe. Fresh green beans do require a little work snapping off the ends and then snapping into bite sized pieces, but the taste is totally worth every second! Besides, little helper hands in the kitchen can handle snapping beans. It is a great kid-sized activity!
Once the beans are snapped, I rinse them with cold water and set aside. Then comes the next star of the dish–bacon! No Southern Style Green Bean recipe is complete without the bacon. Today, I had thick cut bacon in the frig, so I cut six pieces into 1-inch chunks and threw them in my pot on medium to cook. You dont want to cook bacon on high (even if it is faster) because you end up splattering grease everywhere and can burn your pan. Remember, slow and steady wins the race!
Once the bacon is cooked, remove the bacon from the pot and add your diced onion. Again, medium heat..dont rush this 🙂 Sprinkle with a pinch or two of Kosher Salt and cook the onions until they just start to turn golden on the edges. Then add your garlic for a minute.
Once your garlic has been in the pot a minute it is time for my secret step…throw in your green beans. You want to coat the green beans with all the onion, garlic, bacon grease goodness for about a minute. Since my green beans had just been washed, the water helped pick up all the fond from the bottom of the pot before added more liquid. This will ensure maximum flavor!
Once the green beans have had their chance to bask in the goodness for a minute, add your small red potatoes whole and the chicken stock. At this point, it will look like you barely have room to cover the potatoes with stock, but just trust the process here.
Turn the heat to high and boil uncovered for 10 minutes. Then reduce to simmer, add back in your bacon pieces, and cover the pot and cook for 20 minutes. At the end of the cook time, I then take my spatula and cut the potatoes in half amd let them simmer for the last 5 minutes to soak in the yumminess.
Once the timer goes off, you are in for a treat! These go great with just about anything–a steak fresh off the grill, roast, or even bbq goodness like these Baby Back Ribs. You can even enjoy these on their own…which is exactly what I am eating as I write this blog. However, you choose to enjoy them, you wont regret making them!
Southern Style Green Beans
1-1 1/2 lbs Fresh Green Beans, snapped
6 Slices of Bacon, cut in 1-inch cubes
1 Onion, diced
Pinch of Kosher Salt
Fresh Ground Pepper
4 Cloves Garlic, minced
1-1 lb bag of small red potatoes
32 oz Chicken Stock
- Cook bacon on medium in a large pot until cooked.
- Remove bacon, and add diced onions.
- Sprinkle with salt and pepper and let onions cook until the edges begin to turn golden.
- Add garlic and continue to cook 1 minute.
- Toss in green beans to the pot and let cook a minute while gently scraping the bottom of pot free of fond with your spatula.
- Add potatoes and chicken stock to the pot, turn heat to high, and let boil for 10 minutes.
- Reduce heat to simmer, put lid on pot and cook for 15 minutes.
- Cut potatoes in half with spatula and let simmer for 5 more minutes.