Saturday, September 29, 2012

Vegetable of the Week: Green Beans

When we first made the switch to Paleo, we encountered some dissent over whether green beans fell under the banner of vegetable or legume.   Since legumes aren't Paleo, this was a pretty important question to answer!

The answer from a few trusted sources like Mark Sisson, Rob Wolff, and Diane SanFilippo is that while green beans are a legume, they have very little lectin, which is what makes other beans problematic.  I was pretty pleased to hear that since green beans are a favorite in our family!

Often when we have green beans as a side dish, we just steam them or saute them in a little coconut oil and garlic.  This week, we decided to revamp a traditional family dish from my husband's family that is known as "Laci beans" because it was the only way my husband's little sister would eat vegetables when she was little.

The story of the Laci beans is that they were created on a camping trip out of vegetable desperation.  They were essentially canned beans dumped in a pot with a bit of onion and some diced bacon and boiled.  I don't know what movies you grew up with, but when I think of boiled bacon, this is what comes to mind:

"You said you didn't like all the grease from fried bacon...
so I boiled it." 
We decided that we would like to revamp the Laci beans with fresh, tasty ingredients that still have nutritional content.  Here's what we came up with:

Recipe:  Sauteed Green Beans with Bacon and Onion (aka Laci Beans)


  • 4 slices thick-cut bacon, diced
  • 1/4 of a sweet onion, chopped 
  • 1 lb fresh green beans, trimmed and snapped
  1. Cook the bacon in a saute pan over medium heat until it is about halfway done.
  2. Add the chopped onion and cook together with the bacon until the onion is caramelized and the bacon is mostly done.
  3. Add your beans and saute them briefly with the bacon and onion just until heated through.  Be careful not to overcook.
Revamped Laci beans.

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