I have a vegetable roasting problem. Mostly I just want to roast all of them all the time and I think perhaps I have forgotten that there is any other way to cook vegetables (although I am starting to believe that there is no other way to cook them that is nearly as delicious). And now my roasting obsession has gone beyond your typical fare (various squash, potatoes, broccoli), and we have ventured in to the bean family.
Green beans were a pretty typical vegetable for my family growing up. They were something that everyone could agree on, and although I didn’t love them I could generally manage to eat at least a few (yes, usually about five, thank you…and washed down with milk). And it has honestly never for a moment occurred to me that they could be cooked any way other than boiling or steaming and sprinkled with salt, which is the only way I have ever known them.
And then, a few weeks ago, I was watching Giada De Laurentiis make some kind of salad, for which she roasted some green beans to go on top of it. Now, I am not anywhere close to a salad person. In fact, I’m pretty sure there is not a single food I enjoy that has the word salad in it (hmmm, perhaps we should work on that). But when I saw her roast those green beans it was like, uhm of course! Why haven’t we ventured out to things like that?
I’m so glad I did. Roasted green beans are about ten times better than regular green beans. They are crisp and their skinny ends get just a little bit of brown char on them with the perfect amount of crunch. They kind of shrink up inside of themselves so that when you bite into them their is plenty of air and a bit of brittleness. They are brown and salty and I don’t know that I’ll ever be tempted to steam a set of green beans ever again.
The only problem is, if I’m always using my oven to roast green beans, where I am going to cook my chicken? These are the things I worry about apparently.
Roasted Green Beans
inspired by Giada de Laurentiis
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Bake Time: 25 minutes
6 to 8 oz. fresh green beans
1 tablespoon olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. To prep the green beans cut off both ends* and then cut them in half. Spread them out in a single layer on a foil lined baking sheet. Pour the olive oil over them and then season them with salt and pepper. Use your hands to toss them and make sure they are all coated with oil.
3. Roast for 20-25 minutes, until crispy and lightly browned, using a spatula to turn them about half way through the cooking time. Serve warm.
*Even though it’s more traditional to only cut one end off the green beans, I think that in this case if you leave an end on it gets too crispy and burnt.