Before we would leave for our vacation to Turkey in the summers, we would always call my grandparents just before for last minute requests. Each time, my grandmother would ask me what I would like her to make for my first meal there. Each time, I wanted her green beans and tomatoes!
Maybe it’s the sun. Maybe it’s the soil, but green beans just taste better there. I can sometime get the same feel and flavor when I can find the flat roman beans at the farmers market. Most of the times, I have to settle for the regular french beans.
I think this is one of the easiest turkish recipes to do: just dump everything in the pot and let it cook..Easy peasy, Lemon Squeezey.
Simple ingredients: green beans, onion, tomatoes, and olive oil.
Usually, I will get the 2 lb bag of french beans from Costco. Because it is all self contained in the bag, I take the whole bag, place it on cutting board, grab my bread knife and cut the beans (in the bag) in half. It keeps the beans sort of together to be able to cut them all without having to wrangle them.
Then it’s a rinse and dump into a big pasta pot.
Quarter an onion and throw that in
Quarter 2 medium tomatoes, yep-that goes in too.
1/2 cup olive oil, 2 tsp sugar, 1 tsp salt and enough water to cover the beans (about 3-4 cups)
Bring to a boil, then simmer until the water is gone. It will take about an hour or 2, but it is well worth the slow simmer. It’s one of those recipes that you put on sunday morning and go about the day.
When I was young, My grandmother used to make a version of this with ground meat. She would cook up the ground meat and onions first, add the rest of the ingredients after and serve it warm with some yogurt. This was not my grandfathers favorite. He much preferred the meatless one.
If my grandmother would make the meat one, I would watch him at the other end of the table meticulously use his knife to gently scrape all the meat from the beans.
I’ve read that these beans can be cooked and frozen. I haven’t tried it, but it is definitely on my agenda for this summer. There is a vendor at the local farmers market that sells purple dragon flat green beans. They cook up just perfect. This year, if I can’t seem to grow the beans myself, I am going to make tons of beans for me to enjoy over the winter and pretend that it’s summer again!