September 11, 2011

What to Do with Overgrown Green Beans

One of my favorite things about summer is getting to eat this meal.

It's so simple yet so delicious.

You know those green beans that you should have picked a few days ago? Those beans that you now think are probably too big and too tough? Use those beans to make this!

Generally I like fresh green beans to be slightly crunchy. I like to steam them just a little bit, so that they are still bright green and have some bite to them. But this meal is different. In this dish the beans cook for quite a while with small potatoes and a meaty smoked ham hock. Those large, tough beans soften and absorb some of that smoky ham flavor without becoming soggy. They retain their shape and their bite.

On a hot day I like to cook this outside on campfire or grill coals, but I have also cooked it on my kitchen stove.I've never measured any of the ingredients for this because nothing needs to be measured. Just throw the ingredients into a dutch oven and let it simmer for a while.

This is always a crowd pleaser!DUTCH OVEN GREEN BEANS, HAM, AND POTATOES

A meaty smoked ham hock
Small potatoes (or larger potatoes, quartered)
Large green beans
A little bit of chopped onion and/or minced garlic
A generous chunk of butter
A tiny pinch of sugar
Salt and pepper
Water or chicken broth

Place ham hock in bottom of dutch oven. Add remaining ingredients. If cooking on kitchen stove add enough water or chicken broth to half cover ingredients. (If cooking on campfire or grill coals use enough water or broth to almost completely cover ingredients.) Cook until potatoes and green beans are tender and meat is falling off hock (probably about an hour and a half). If using small tender green beans instead of larger tough ones, don't add them until after the potatoes and hock have already partially cooked.


Candy C. said...

Mmmm....that looks good! :)

MARARIA said...

Delicious...I love this dish, I usually make it with "Jamon Serrano" A tipical spanish Ham (Similar to prociuto).

homegrown countrygirl said...

Candy C. ~ Thanks!!!

MARARIA ~ I love learning about Spanish food and language from you! (And this meal is one of my most favorites, too!)

MamaTea said...

Since later summer and early fall is when we do all our campfire cooking (AND we have some of those beans you mentioned in our garden ;)...) this will have to go on the list to make!

I hopped over here from Candy's blog (Lazy J Bar C) and I'm thinking I hit the jackpot!

homegrown countrygirl said...

Hi MamaTea! I'm so glad you hopped over! Hope you enjoy the dutch oven green beans, ham, and potatoes on your campfire! (That's my favorite way to cook it!!!)

Candy C. said...

homegrown countrygirl,
I'm not sure if you noticed but I awarded you the Liebster Award on my blog on Tuesday! I love your blog and wanted to share it with others! Hope you can stop by and check it out!

homegrown countrygirl said...

Candy ~ Ohmygosh! Thank you so much!!!