Middle-Eastern Slow Cooked Green Beans

By • July 16, 2012 14 Comments

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Author Notes: I don’t know when it came to be that chefs and cooks decided that your veggies needed to be cooked al dente. While I know they retain more of their vitamins when cooked a minimal amount I also know it’s not like the vitamins just vaporize into thin air but instead I am pretty sure, and take note I am not a scientist, that they wind up in the cooking broth.
Either way and no matter how you slice it I like veggies that can stand up to multiple cooking methods giving me choices as how best to enjoy them. I like green beans blanched then sautéed al dente but then I also like them long cooked. That doesn’t mean I want mush because I want something that still has character and a bite.
So after cooking green beans and eating green beans pretty much all my life with potatoes or onions, and even bacon and onions I was looking for a change. This last summer I found a wonderful recipe for okra that was stewed and I liked the recipe so much I made it two or three times.
The other night I was thinking how good that recipe would be with green beans and, actually, even easier and less time consuming then the okra. The original recipe is from the New York Times’ Recipes for Health by Martha Rose Shulman just in case you have any interest in the original okra recipe which I will make again this summer.

Serves 4

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 pounds green beans, clipped and cleaned
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon pomegranate molasses
  • juice from half a lemon
  • 1 teaspoon allspice
  • 14 ounces can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste
  • kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
  1. Place a large heavy bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the olive oil and once it is hot add the onions. Season the onions with a pinch of salt and some pepper. Sweat the onions until they begin to soften trying not to brown them.
  2. Add the garlic and once it becomes fragrant add the allspice and sugar. Then add the beans and stir them to coat with the oil.
  3. Now add the rest of the ingredients and stir to combine. Cook on medium until you hear the pot sizzling then reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for an hour remembering to stir about every twenty minutes. They may take longer the an hour but not much.
  4. Taste, adjust the salt and pepper and serve.

More Great Recipes: Green Beans|Beans & Legumes|Side Dishes|Tomatoes

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Comments (14) Questions (0)


about 1 year ago pratchford

This was SO GOOD! used both yellow and green beans. Had this over rice for dinner--perfection.


over 1 year ago Tarragon

Is it possible that the sugar stand in for the pomegranate molasses - so that we don't need both?


about 2 years ago J David B

Just about any middle eastern food store should have it, Whole Foods maybe, or Kalustyan's in NYC (I think they do mail order) kalustyans.com OR Maybe Food52 has it in their Provisions shop?


about 2 years ago kim connector

where do i get pomegranate molasses?


about 2 years ago J David B

Gotta give this a try. Very similar to "fasolakia" here in Greece. These regional similarities and variations on dishes are always so interesting. The Greek version is sort of the same method but with only green beans, grated tomato, onion, beans,parsley, sometime carrot, sometimes garlic and olive oil - and chunks of potato towards the end. I don't have pomegranate syrup so readily available even with Turkey just next door, but might try it with petimezi as a sub (a syrup made of grape must) Thanks for this interesting recipe!


about 2 years ago jslade

My maternal Grandmother was from Damascus Syria. This is a dish she would make but would also add ground lamb to the dish. She would serve it over rice with sauteed broken pieces of vermicelli in butter. It was absolutely delicious. Thank you for bringing me back a piece of my childhood.


about 2 years ago thirschfeld

OMG, that sounds so, so good. I am going to definitely try that!


about 2 years ago Donna la Marca

I made this dish for dinner tonight. Yumm!! I took jslade cue and added lamb meatballs. Will definitely make again!!


over 2 years ago carrieberryo

The recipe's instructions say to add sugar, but the list of ingredients doesn't list sugar. How much is needed?


over 2 years ago thirschfeld

Not much, a scant teaspoon.


almost 3 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

This is such a great recipe -- I've made it several times, including with organic frozen string beans last winter -- but found that 1 teaspoon of allspice was more than was necessary. I love the spice, but the last few times I have used 1/2 teaspoon instead, which (I thought) tasted better. ;o)


about 3 years ago bodeswell

No listing for sugar either...


about 3 years ago aliciad

This is actually a great way to prepare okra, too!


about 3 years ago aargersi

Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.

There are no green beans listed in the ingredients - but I get the idea and they sound great! ps I make your burnt okra from last year often ...