Full of vitamins and fiber, flat beans are excellent for balancing all your summer menus. They are eaten cooked and, preferably, still slightly crunchy in order to preserve all their nutritional benefits. But how to properly prepare and cook flat beans to enjoy the best? We tell you everything in the rest of this article…
Prepare Them Well Before Cooking Them
The flat bean is also often called “snap bean.” It is a vegetable cousin of the green bean, which has a flattened pod and which, unlike the latter, does not have a thread or fibrous internal membrane. So, unlike traditional green beans, there is no need to shred flat beans! To prepare them, de-stem them using a simple small paring knife, then cut them into regular pieces. Also, remember to rinse them well with clean water beforehand. Once washed, hulled, and cut into sections, you can choose to cook them by steam, in water, in a pressure cooker, in a pan, in a wok, or even in the microwave.
Stream The Flat Beans
Choosing to steam your vegetables means having the assurance of preserving as many of their vitamins and minerals as possible! In addition, steam cooking is intended to be one of the healthiest options available and the simplest to implement. All you need is a steam basket (to fit on a saucepan or pressure cooker) or a specific cooking appliance. So, to steam your snap beans:
- Arrange your vegetables in a steam basket, which you will place in your saucepan, casserole, or appliance above the bottom of water previously brought to the boil, ensuring that the beans cannot come into contact with the boiling water.
- Cover your saucepan, your casserole dish, or your appliance with a lid and let your flat beans cook for around ten minutes if you want to enjoy them while still slightly crunchy or around fifteen minutes if you prefer them to be more tender.
- Season with salt and pepper as well as any spices, aromatic herbs, or condiments of your choice. They are then ready to be enjoyed hot or cooled and prepared as a salad.
Cook The Flat Beans In Water
Don’t have a steam basket? The alternative to steaming is to cook your flat beans the English way, in other words, in a large volume of boiling, salted water. This simplest cooking method requires no added fat and is accessible to all cooks, whether novices or the most experienced. To cook your flat beans in water:
- Fill a large pot with water. Salt it generously with a nice pinch of coarse salt, then bring it to a boil.
- Immerse your flat bean sections in boiling water and let them cook for between 10 and 13 minutes, depending on the more or less melting texture you want to obtain.
- Drain your beans using a slotted spoon or strainer, then move on to seasoning and tasting.
If you want to fix the color of your beans and stop their cooking in order to maintain a slightly crunchy texture, quickly immerse your beans in an ice water bath just after draining them. However, this step is entirely optional.
Cook The Flat Beans In The Pressure Cooker
To enjoy a more elaborate and cooked dish, why not prepare flat beans in a casserole dish? Accompanied by an aromatic garnish, the flat beans will then take on other flavors during their cooking. To cook your beans in a pressure cooker:
- Prepare an aromatic garnish by dicing an onion and a degermed garlic clove.
- Pour a drizzle of olive oil into the bottom of your casserole dish, then brown the onions and garlic for 1 to 2 minutes. Then, throw in your flat bean sections. You can also add peeled tomatoes (without their skin) and a tablespoon of tomato paste if you wish.
- Mix everything over medium heat, then season to taste with salt, pepper, and other spices of your choice.
- Add one to two large glasses of water or broth.
- Close the casserole dish and leave to cook for around ten minutes after rotating the valve.
- After letting all the steam escape, open your casserole dish and possibly add a little chopped fresh aromatic herbs such as parsley.
Cooking Flat Beans In A Pan Or Wok
Cooking your flat beans in a pan or wok is another simple, quick, and tasty way to cook your vegetables. To prepare your pan of flat beans:
- Heat the equivalent of a tablespoon of olive or sesame oil in your pan or wok. If you wish, you can sauté chopped onions, garlic, or shallots for one to two minutes.
- Then add your flat beans, possibly accompanied by other vegetables.
- Salt pepper, then add a little water to prevent your vegetables from sticking to the bottom of the pan or wok during cooking.
- Let your vegetables cook for around twenty minutes in the pan versus around fifteen minutes in the wok, stirring frequently using a spatula. Add a little liquid during cooking if necessary. Do not hesitate to adapt the cooking time according to your vegetables and your taste preferences.
- Sprinkle your pan of vegetables with chopped fresh herbs or sesame seeds before serving. It’s even better!
Cooking Flat Beans In The Microwave
The microwave is the ally of cooks who are in a hurry but who do not want to give up enjoying small, balanced dishes prepared with fresh produce. Although less conventional, this cooking method is nevertheless well suited to the preparation of vegetables such as flat beans. To cook vegetables in the microwave:
- Place your previously washed and chopped flat beans in a microwave-safe container.
- Add a little water, then cover the container with microwavable cling film.
- Then put it in the microwave and cook on full power for 10 to 15 minutes. This time must be adapted according to the performance of your device.
- Remove from the microwave, pierce the film with the tip of a knife to let the steam escape. Be careful not to burn yourself.
- Then, remove the film and season your beans to your liking before serving them.
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