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Beans, Green

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Preview of Bean, Green

Available

July 15 - October 31

Harvest Period

July 15 - September 15

Green beans (also called string beans, snap beans, or French beans) and yellow beans (sometimes called wax beans) may have been first cultivated as far back as 7000 BC in the Americas, and are universally available in canned and frozen form. Many North American children first experience green beans as part of mushroom- and onion-infused green bean casserole, a bane or boon to humankind, depending on your point of view. But everyone will agree that there is a world of difference between a limp bean from a can and a crisp, bright green bean from an Ontario farm or garden.

 

What to Look For

 

Look for smooth bright beans without spots. Fresh beans will snap when bent—tough or older beans will bend. This is a sign they are drying out. Avoid the bendy as well as bumpy beans—enlarged seeds inside also signal they are no longer tender.

 

Cleaning and Preparation

 

When you are ready to cook them, rinse beans thoroughly. Some people choose to cut off the ends.

 

Storage

 

Fresh beans can be kept in the refrigerator for about a week. Store them dry and unwashed (this helps them last longer) in a sealed plastic bag or container.

 

Nutritional Information

 

Green and yellow beans contain fiber, and are a very good source of vitamins A, C, K and folate. They also provide a modest amount of calcium and are a very good source of manganese.

 

1 cup of green or yellow beans provides 44 calories, 0g fat, 10g carbohydrate, 4g dietary fiber, and 2g protein.

 

How to Use

 

Green beans are wonderful steamed until their bright green colour emerges, then drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. They can be served warm or cold, or added to soups, casseroles, salads, and stir fry dishes.

 

Varieties

  

Cherokee Wax and Honey Gold are the most common yellow bean varieties in Ontario.

Green beans grown for fresh market include Improved Tendergreen, Contender, Provider, and Strike.