27 September 2009

Thanks for Sharing Our Healthy Eating Day!

Thanks so much to all who attended the Healthy Eating Festival at our local farmers' market! We all had a great time, farmers and customers alike. In addition to all the wonderful fresh produce, all-natural meat and flowers, several of the farmers cooked up some great recipes to share with everyone. I promised I would post a recipe I shared for our snap beans and plum tomatoes: 2 quarts green beans (or 1 quart each green and yellow beans) Plum Tomatoes - about 4 medium sized, chopped Olive Oil Italian Seasoning Garlic Powder Basil - fresh or dried, to taste Fresh Garlic - about 4 cloves, peeled, crushed and chopped Wash and trim beans. Coat bottom of large skillet with pure olive oil (it's so much healthier than canola and vegetable oil). Heat oil over medium heat and toss in crushed, chopped garlic and cook for about 45 seconds. Add beans, stir with the oil in the pan and cook, covered, over medium heat about 7 minutes. Stir again, add Italian seasoning and garlic powder if needed to taste. When beans are tender, add chopped plum tomatoes and basil. Shut off heat and leave covered just so the tomatoes are heated through. Stir and serve while hot. A few kitchen tips: Olive oil, while being a much healthier alternative to plain old vegetable oil or canola oil, can sometimes burn quickly. The best olive oil to use for cooking is either light olive oil or regular, pure olive oil. Light olive oil can also be used for baking. These two types of oil have a less pungent olive flavor and will not burn as readily as the virgin or extra-virgin varieties of olive oil, which should only be used for dipping and salad dressings. Another tip: to quickly peel garlic, set the clove on a chopping board and crush it with either the palm of your hand or with a knife, press down firmly on the garlic clove. The garlic clove will slip easily out it's skin. Also, crushed garlic gives your dishes much more flavor then just slicing alone. By adding garlic powder or extra garlic to this recipe, you can omit salt. Taste the beans first and add herbs as needed to taste. Hope you enjoy my recipe!