We made it to the end of the week. Not that there was really any doubt, but if your kids are in school I’m sure you know how I feel. I always think of September as the real New Year, unlike the one we celebrate in January, and right now our house is in a routine-overhaul as we figure out how to navigate the busyness that comes with full schedules for everyone, not to mention a major deadline for me, which really doesn’t happen for another five months, but if you knew the work that needed to be done between now and then you’d likely pass me a stiff drink, wish me luck, and steel clear of my space for a while.
I’m kidding. Sort of.
My days are looking a little harried right now, and I’m going to assume the same is true for you. This means I’m always looking for quick ways to put something new on the table for dinner, possibly even something that might keep these boys of mine full a little longer than usual, so I’m not dishing out bowls of pasta two hours before or after a hearty meal because they’re feeling famished. It happens regularly.
And while I love feeding my boys veggies, and they’re really good about eating them, or at least one of them is, I feel like it's doing nothing for their appetites. Protein and carbs is where it’s at, but man cannot live on bacon and bread alone. So I’m adding nuts and panko to my vegetables and turning them into oven-baked “fries” for a little fun and extra fuel at the dinner table.
You could apply this same treatment to other seasonal veggies like zucchini, and later in the fall you might make a tray of root vegetable fries using carrots, parsnips, and squash (although those firm veggies may need a parboil first). The egg and nuts offer a boost protein, the breadcrumbs add a little heft, and while you could season them however you see fit, I’m pretty happy with just salt and pepper. Serve with a bowl of Dijonaisse (equal parts mayo and Dijon mustard), for dipping and enjoy… you’ve earned it this week.
Green Beans "Fries"
- 1lb. green beans, ends trimmed
- 1/2 cup pecans or almonds
- 1/2 cup panko
- Salt and pepper
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 eggs, beaten
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Blitz the pecans in a food processor or mini chopper until it resembles a fine crumb. Transfer them a small mixing bowl, add the panko, and season with salt and pepper.
Place the flour in a separate bowl, and the eggs in a third bowl.
Make an assembly line and dip the beans in the flour, followed by the egg, and then roll them in the pecan/panko mixture. Transfer the beans to the prepared baking sheet leaving a little space between each, and bake for 15-20 minutes or until the coating is golden brown. Serve warm.
- Due to the natural oils in the nuts there is no need to spray these with extra cooking oil unless you want to.
- Feel free to use only panko or traditional breadcrumbs in place of the nuts if you prefer.