String Beans Braised in Olive Oil
A truly noble way to prepare many vegetables is to braise them in olive oil. The long cooking does tend to minimize the nutrient content, but the flavor and texture are astounding. Accent with whole cloves of garlic, fresh tomatoes, or bits of citrus and the result is sweet, rich and satisfying.
Serves: 4
1 pound string beans, trimmed
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup minced onion
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoons sugar
3 garlic cloves
1 lemon (juice and zest)
1 large tomato, diced
1/2 cup tomato juice
1/2 cup water
1 sheet of parchment paper
Preheat oven to 300 F. Give the garlic cloves a little smash with the flat of a knife. Arrange beans in the bottom of a Dutch oven or baking dish. Add water, tomato juice and olive oil. Spread garlic, diced tomatoes, and minced onion over beans. Sprinkle with sugar, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Soak parchment in water and spread over the top of the beans. Cover pan tightly with lid or foil.
Cook in slow oven for 2-1/2 to 3 hours until most of the liquid has been absorbed and pan juice is a little syrupy. This can be served immediately, but is best served room temperature after resting a bit. It will keep for several days in the fridge so make a big batch.
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