When my kids were young, they were like most other children I knew and refused to eat most vegetables. They did say okay to carrots and winter squash and they didn’t love, but reluctantly ate, green string beans.
They were required to eat 4 string beans when I served them with dinner.
I wouldn’t exactly call that child abuse and I don’t think it damaged their psyches. But they still talk about it, that I made them eat 4.
Actually, I think in the very depths of their beings they are happy I insisted on that because when they talk about the green bean requirement they have a smile on their faces.
I usually cooked the green beans straight. Steamed or poached. Nothing on top so they could dip it in oil or butter or ketchup or whatever.
I think they ate them straight though.
We still are a green bean family. Green beans are mild and easy to eat. If you’re gonna get a child to try a vegetable this might be a good one for starters. I think they “sell” a whole lot better than, say, broccoli.
Recently I roasted the beans. We all love roasted vegetables and I’d never tried it with green beans because I was so used to making them just plain.
I sprinkled some dried Aleppo pepper on top. If you don’t know about this spice, I can tell you it is one of the milder (but still slightly hot) peppers and the dried version is vaguely smoky. I guess you could substitute smoked paprika, though I’ve never actually tried that. Anyway, this recipe is a keeper:
Roasted Green Beans with Aleppo Pepper
1 pound green string beans
1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon dried Aleppo pepper
salt to taste
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Wash the beans and remove the ends. Dry the beans and place them on the parchment paper. Pour the olive oil over the beans and toss to coat them. Sprinkle the beans with the garlic, thyme, Aleppo pepper and salt to taste. Roast for 12-15 minutes or until tender but still crispy.
Makes 4 servings