Yes, summer is about tomatoes. But it’s also about beans: green ones, yellow ones, purple ones, long ones, really long ones, flat ones, ones for eating pod and all, ones for shelling, ones for drying, and the list goes on. They all get the Get Local spotlight this July!
Summers bountiful in beans are nothing new here in WNC. In fact, it’s been asserted that more heirloom beans originated in WNC than anywhere else in the country. One heirloom definitely distinct to the area? The greasy bean, so called because of its smooth, fuzz-free pod. Today, growers mean serious bean business, keeping heirloom varieties alive while also growing new varieties and incorporating new equipment; Asheville Scene covered the story of Kuster Farms’ amazing bean picker last year.
Consider the Beans Spilled
How do area Appalachian Grown partner restaurants and artisan food producers plan to celebrate Get Local’s big bean bounty this July? Glad you asked! Note: Specials always subject to change.
- The Junction’s early summer menu includes braised local October beans with cauliflower, preserved lemon and capers, and a root vegetable demi alongside sweet-tea brined chicken. Look for local lima beans, too, in a warm black eyed pea-lima bean Hoppin’ John salad; the salad accompanies grilled sirloin tip complete with a balsamic reduction, crispy avocado, roasted cherry tomatoes, and a bourbon barbeque glaze.
- Summer has inspired The Market Place to whip up a local seasonal special of wood-grilled pork shoulder served with a butter bean and kale ragout and a strawberry relish.
- Copper Pot & Wooden Spoon is producing their Dilly Beans with Pickled Peppers now, which were featured in Garden and Gun magazine’s 2012 Made in the South Awards. Their recipe includes just-picked farm-fresh green beans, fresh dill, bell pepper, garlic, and other all-natural ingredients. Chef-owner Jessica DeMarco suggests using them for crunch and bite in a summer salad, to garnish a cocktail, or to just enjoy straight from the jar. Find Copper Pot at Haywood’s Historic Farmers Market.
- Neo Burrito’s locations will serve up your choice of a local bison sausage and local summer veggie burrito or two tacos with a local green bean and bacon salad. The special will include a fountain drink and run throughout July for $14.99.
- While you can’t just run out and enjoy Colorful Palate’s quick refrigerator pickles unless you’re a lucky catering client, they share you can make them, well, quickly at home! Just blanch your beans and “pickle” them for at least a day in the fridge in a marinade of vinegar (they like cider), water, sugar (they like brown), mustard seeds, caraway seeds, salt, red pepper flakes, and whole garlic gloves. The beans last for a couple of weeks in the brine and are great as a snack, on sandwiches, or chopped up like relish!
Head over to our online Local Food Guide to browse more Appalachian Grown partner restaurants and groceries serving and selling local beans now, as well as Appalachian Grown certified farms growing beans this year.
- 1 lb fresh, local green beans
- 2-3 tbs olive oil
- Salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Wash the green beans in a colander and let the beans dry or pat them with a paper towel.
- Transfer them to a large bowl. Add 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil and toss so that the green beans are well coated.
- Spread them on a cookie sheet and sprinkle 1 teaspoon of salt or to taste evenly over the green beans.
- Roast the green beans for approximately 10 minutes or until they are tender. Enjoy!
Tags:Appalachian Grown, beans, Colorful Palate Catering, Copper Pot & Wooden Spoon, Get Local, green beans, Haywood's Historic Farmers Market, Ivy Creek Family Farm, Kuster Farms, Neo Burrito, recipe, The Junction, The Market Place