Sometimes I pass by an unidentified vegetable or herb many times at the market and I don’t pay any attention to it. That’s what was going on with these long green strings actually called ‘snake’ beans. I didn’t know what they were until one morning I was looking around and someone was loading a bunch of the snakes into her bag. I had to ask her what it was and what do you do with it. She said they were long beans and you use them just like green beans. Another lady standing there joined in the conversation. “My son loves green beans.”
So there the both of us were staring at them and deciding whether we wanted to go for it. I mean, they are very strange looking to someone who’s never cooked them. And the bundles were so big and long and floppy. I read later that they can be up to 3 feet long. They have a more grandiose name in Latin that better suits them. It’s ‘vina unguiculata subsp. sesquipedalis.’ I decided to go with the green colored beans and not the purple ones, so them would be more ‘normal,’ although I’ve been discovering that when you cook any kind of purple bean, it turns green.
When I got home, I rinsed them and set them up on the cutting board. Cutting them was so fast and easy compared to regular green beans. No snapping off a million ends. Just hold them in a bundle and cut all the ends, at each end, with one slice. So two slices and they are ready to be cut into your 2″ pieces. ‘Where have I been?’ ‘This is great.’ I thought. And they tasted great.
Long beans are fiber rich, good for removal of toxins from the colon and reducing LDL cholesterol levels. They contain a good amount of vitamin C and more vitamin A than the other beans in its legume family.
Long Beans, Shallots and Garlic with Toasted Almonds
- 4 cups long beans or green beans, cut in 2″ pieces
- 2 large shallots, diced
- 2 large garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon grass feed butter (Kerrygold)
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil or olive oil
- salt and pepper
- toasted almond slivers or slices
Blanche beans for 10 minutes and drain. Sauté shallots and garlic in butter and the oil for 10 minutes. Combine beans and shallot mixture. Season with salt and pepper and stir in almonds.