Tuesday, February 1, 2011

FROM MY FRENCH HEART TO YOURS

Once upon a time, I was hospitalized with pneumonia and stuck in the hospital for days. My husband, my sweetheart, my friend, bought and brought me this cookbook, knowing that I enjoyed reading them as much as cooking from them. Are you like that? I started folding corners over on the pages of recipes I wanted to try and soon the book looked like an accordion. I knew it was a keeper.

I came across a fantastic blog the other day called The Single Nester. Carmie is another gal who loves to read cookbooks and decided to cook a recipe a week from her cookbooks. I volunteered to do the same. Believe it or not, I have over 100 cookbooks. Anyway, we decided to do this together. After you read my post, please visit Carmie...we are in this together.
As I have said, this book was like my bible, but I hardly referred to it after my hospital stay and it's a shame. It has wonderful, doable recipes that I have neglected to try. Okay, Blondie, stop babbling. Today we are making Green Bean Provencal. Why? Because I had most of the ingredients in my fridge. An essential ingredient is French style tender baby beans. I was going to use some fresh green beans {and you can}, but I happened to find them on a trip to Costco this morning while we were stocking up on our blizzard provisions. A wonderful side dish is made with them as I will illustrate. Ahemmmm...
Above is the recipe. If you can't read it, even enlarged, please email me and I will send you the recipe.
Some of the fresh ingredients...
...and the haricots verts. Don't let the name scare you..use trimmed greens beans if you want.
A little info on them.
So first you cook these little babies over medium heat for about 3~4 minutes until tender crisp.
Drain in a colander.
Do your nails OR in the mean time, chop some onion {one large} and 4 cloves {I used 6...we love garlic} coarsely.
The recipe calls for peeled, seeded tomatoes. I was NOT going to spend precious time peeling 4 tomatoes which requires boiling or blanching, so forget that, but do squeeze out the juice and seeds or your end result will be soupy and runny. I have illustrated that above. Should have done a manicure while I had the chance. Just give a quarter of a tomato a good squeeze into it's pile of goo. Add the tomatoes and wine to the pan where you have been simmering the garlic and onion and cook for 20 minutes over medium heat. Squeeze in that lemon juice; it really make all the difference, and the pepper. I added a pinch of salt, too.
Add the green beans, and olives and let them heat up. about 3 minutes. And this is what you have. The recipe says that this is great with a roasted chicken. Well, I was fresh out. I made pork chops and we spooned this right over. As I was cooking and sniffing, I couldn't help but think that this would be a wonderful sauce for fresh shrimp. You tell me.

That's all I have. Oh yes...we are in the middle of a blizzard, but I am trying to ignore it. So it also seems, the majority of the country, so I won't complain. Try to find something to keep you busy...stay warm and safe! :-)

81 comments:

Pondside said...

Ah Jane - that made me smile. I'm sure that your Haricots Verts Provencal were welcomed by everyone at your table. I cooked asparagus and yellow peppers as a side this evening - felt very French, indeed!
....and yes, I read cookbooks for pleasure too!

Bayside Rose said...

Yum...it all looks so delicious and I am a lover of green beans too!

With a very fierce cyclone happening up North, fires down South...I am at home cooking too and staying safe. Pam x

NanaDiana said...

I was just getting ready to pop offline and go to bed when I saw your post pop on...and, of course, I had to read it. I love cookbooks too...and have many...WAY too many...but I read them the way other people read novels. This is probably some kind of disorder but I don't think it is necessary to be medicated, do you?

This looks delicious...love the garlic in it. I really need to try some recipes out of all these books I have accumulated. It is just sad to NOT use them.

I will pop over to your friend's blog tomorrow when I have a bit more time to read. Right now I am off to bed because I have a long day of work tomorrow....and it is storming here and windy...and blowing...and ugly!

And the meeting I was going to last night was cancelled because of the snow...but I am ON anyway!
Have a nice nighr, Jane...stay safe and warm! Hugs-Diana

Sherri B. said...

I have that cookbook also and have a collection like you do..Thanks for reminding me of this one as I used to love it and havn't even looked at in years. I'll have to get it out and try out that bean recipe, looks great.

Stay safe and warm.

⚜ ↁℯℬℬᴵℰ⚜ said...

Our greenbeans were canned tonight...good, but nothing like yours! I know I have said this before, but stay safe and warm Jane! X0

Pamela said...

Looks really good Jane.
I love to cook and am always on the lookout for new recipes.
Thanks for sharing and stay warm!
Pamela xo

Mary said...

So happy to have found your blog. Like you, I read cookbooks like library books. Great idea about trying something new. We're waiting for the storm to arrive here in Hamilton - after seeing pictures of Chicago on tonight's news, it isn't going to be fun!Mary

Confessions of a Plate Addict said...

Now you know this recipe is right up my alley, Jane! Do you know that in France those beans come frozen and are just as good? Love the addition of the tomatoes! But...blizzard provisions! Sounds so scary! Stay in and stay warm, Jane! Keep us posted! Our 6 inches nearly did me in! lol
Hugs...Debbie

classic • casual • home said...

I love that cookbook! And the other two. Can't wait to read more from you!
Mary Ann

Sherry said...

Oh, I love this cookbook! I have most of their cookbooks and I love them. I know this recipe. I haven't made it though, it looks delicious. I learned what haricots verts were from that very caption you showed. Very neat challenge. Stay warm.
Sherry

Chatelaine said...

Those look yummy. I could definitely make this recipe even with my basic cooking skills!

I have often thought of making every recipe in a cookbook. I think you are onto something~

We are getting the big storm tomorrow.
We had 8 inches of snow today but that wasn't the big storm. Oh joy, can't wait!

koralee said...

These beans are amazing....oh how I love beans...my favourite! Hugs to you my sweet friend.

Maggie said...

Hi Jane,
Like you I love cookbooks and read them as if they were novels!
This idea is a great way to revisit a favourite cookbook, can't wait to see what else you make from it.
We love haricot vert and I always grow masses of them and yellow ones too, in my potager each year.

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

I have that cookbook too Jane! Your green beans look great and I love the 'a recipe a week' challenge! Gonna go check it out now-stay safe and warm:@)

Paula ~ castleandcottagesigns said...

Oh yum! Always looking for more creative ways to cook veggies, this looks like a keeper:)

Theresa said...

I LOVE green beans and those look delicious! What a nice thing to do on a cold, winter's day! Thanks for sharing your recipe with me!

Have a blessed day, stay warm! HUGS!

cityfarmer said...

today in the kitchen ...
love those little french beans ... have a whole fresh 2 pounds from woodmans ...
will stem ans steam today.

stay warm

Amy @MaisonDecor said...

I like to read cookbooks too, jane. Your recipe sounds delicious, a nice change from plain green beans.

Karen said...

THis looks wonderful! I'm also going to look for that book. I'll try the recipe and let you know how it turns out.

Ice coating everything today, second snow day for school kids. Yuck.

Tammy@beatrice banks said...

That really sounds good. And I'm another one who loves to read cookbooks. Sometimes I just pile up on the couch with a stack of cookbooks. Novel idea to actually cook a recipe from one! Maybe I should try that.

Crystal Rose Cottage said...

I love all green bean dishes and this looks really good...healthy too! Good idea to keep busy and do some cooking when the weather sucks outside!~Hugs, Patti

April said...

Hi Jane! That would definitely make a wonderful sauce for shrimp! Looks so GOOD! I saw on the news this morning what kind of weather y'all are getting...WOW! My heart really goes out to you! Please stay warm and safe!

April said...

Oh...and be sure to stop by today...I'm having a GIVEAWAY!

~Country Lady~ said...

Jane, this recipe sounds scrumptious. I am with you on loving to read and study cookbooks. I love to cook too. I enjoy doing it for my friends and family. I'm sorry the blizzard is upon you. I heard on the news how bad it is, and immediately thought of you and being stranded inside again. I finally can see my yard and driveway, and it's free of all snow and ice for the first time since the first week of December. Stay safe and warm sweet lady.

Carmie of the Single Nester said...

Looks delicious! So much better than my mac and cheese!

Michelle @Shellsshabbyshack said...

Is it weird that I love the color of the green beans? This looks amazing, Jane! I made beef vegetable, yesterday, with canned green beans (not the same:( I hope you're keeping safe and warm. We have another snow day and it's negative something out there. BRRRRR!

Take care,
~Michelle :)

Lou Cinda @ Tattered Hydrangeas said...

Jane, this looks so GOOD! I have copied the recipe and will try it, though I admit that I am a cookbook reader and not cooker too!! And I LOVE to watch cooking shows! Hate to cook! What is up with that??

Hope your husband made it home before the blizzard!!

Stay warm,

Lou Cinda

Penny said...

Hi Jane, I stopped in to see how you were managing in the snowstorm. Cooking is a great way to ignore the frightful weather. Also glad to hear you have joined Weight Watchers. I am doing it and the new points plus program is great cause you can it all the fruits and vegetables you want. Did you know that one of the authors of The Silver Palate cookboods once had a B & B in Saugatuck? Still may but not sure. Stay warm.

White Ironstone Cottage said...

Yummy Jane
It looks so good
Your pictures are fabulous too
Thanks for a fun post
xxoo
Pam

Linda @ A La Carte said...

Jane so funny you are doing this. I love cookbooks and have so very very many. yet do I cook from them? no...well that is until now. I have also set a goal for myself to try a new recipe from my cook books at least twice a month...every week would be nice but I'm trying to keep it real here.lol. I'll be looking for your posts! This looks so good and pork chops...yum. Hugs, Linda

Rebecca said...

I love green beans and this looks wonderful!
I will have to try this recipe, thank you. My husband it the cook book reader...
That was quite a storm we had! I am so thankful we have power...
Have a great day!
Blessings
Rebecca

heartfelt living said...

Hi Jane,
First I have to say your green beans look delicious!
Second, I love that you are cooking your way through one of your favorite cookbooks!
I collect cookbooks as well and I don't refer to them as often as I would like. It seems I have so many wonderful recipes sitting there just waiting to be tried, yet I'm cooking the same things all the time.
I have often thought of doing what you are doing and you know what... You just inspired me! Farm Journal's Cooking and Entertaining in America is the book I'm going to be cooking with.
Thanks for the inspiration.
Stay warm and be safe.
xx
Karen

Aunt Amelia's Attic said...

Ohhhhhh, you did one of those sexy posts, with instructions and photos, for making a recipe! You are really branching out Hon!!! ,-)

Glad the storm is over, in your area. And that you are still with power, etc. But the news says it was an awful storm, in your neck of the woods. Yikes!!!

Hugs and ♥'s...
'Cause Valentine Day is coming!

Susan said...

YUM! I can almost smell the enticing aroma now...
Thanks for sharing Jane! Good luck with your recipe challenge.
- Susan

bella said...

Hi Jane
Love those Costco green beans but you've made them SO much better.
What time is dinner ? :)
xo
Sue

Kathleen Grace said...

What a great idea to post a recipe a week! these look delicious and I am always trying to eat more veggies. Looking forward to the weekly post!

Nancy said...

Hi, Jane. It sounds wonderful! I buy the exact same green beans and tomatoes all the time at Costco.

Hope you are still doing well with the weather. I can't tell who has power and who doesn't so hope you are one of the ones who does.

One year while we lived in Florida, my sister came for a month. We filled the back packs with frozen water and pb&j, grabbed the kids and went to the park (WDW) every day for about 6 or more hours. Walking walking walking. It was the year Orlando was on fire, so it was HOT. 105, I think. We stayed cool and got in the best shape ever. And, that is why I'd go to Florida. :-) Yes, I had buddies, but I almost went alone last summer just to get back in shape. (then the transfer) So, I would definitely do it.

I'm on my own little program and doing Leslie Sansone's Four Fast Miles. We shall see. I have four months and that times 10 to lose. Arghhh!!! (My nickname as a lifeguard was Skinny Minny, what happened?)

Off to your friend's site.

C'est Moi, Julie Marie said...

Hi Jane, that sounds and look just delish!... I get those French style green beans at Costco too... I think I just may have everything to try that tonight!... I love cookbooks too and the one your hubby got you sounds great... we aren't having snow today, but we were under a high wind warning yesterday and last night with gusts up to 100 mph at times... today we are 4 degrees with a windchill of -22... make it go away!... Think Spring!... xoxo Julie Marie

Suzann said...

Oh YUM! We did have quite a storm, didn't we!? I hope you can do your best to enjoy being snowed in.

My Grama's Soul said...

Dear Jane....such a yummy recipe...and such a yummy picture of the final product!! I almost never use a cook book when cooking...my husband's comment to this is he better enjoy this because he will NEVER have it again. (O:

Xo

Jo

Olive Cooper said...

Hi Jane, I read cookbooks from cover to cover all the time. I seldom actually use the recipes but sort of absorb the techniques and the spirit of the recipes if that makes any sense at all. Your beans look so healthy fresh and good. Hugs♥O

Dolly said...

Mmmm.... you have got me hungry now!
Love fresh green beans outta the garden!

Stay warm and be safe,
Hugs,
Dolly

Renee said...

Love green beans! Those look so delish. My fave way to cook them is roasted~ tossed with olive oil and garlic then roasted toillthe edges begin to brown. Heaven!

Shelia said...

Hi Jane! Oh, these little Haricots Verts sound good! Look good! I'm a cookbook junkie too, I admit it!
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Honey at 2805 said...

Looks delish! Love this cookbook!

Gypsy Heart said...

Oh Jane, this looks delicious! I just love veggies and this recipe is one I'll try for sure. I could read cookbooks daily...just like a novel...if I allowed myself to. :) I get so inspired and just love them!

Carmie is a sweetheart isn't she? This should be a fun project for all.

Stay warm and safe! It's miserable here ~

xoxo
Pat

The Moerks said...

Jane it looks delicious. There is no way I would ever peel or seed tomatoes either.

Charlene said...

YUM!!!!!!!!!!! Those look wonderful! I think I need to try this. Do you think you could drain a can of diced tomatoes instead of messing with the fresh? STAY WARM! We're freezing our fanny down here in Texas with a whopping 8 degrees. So, I can only imagine how flipping cold it is for you!!!! Think spring my friend. HUGS!
Charlene

Shellbelle said...

Oh, this is gonna be fun!

In the last year I've moved so many times (3) that I finally knew it was time to do some serious downsizing. I had HUGE collection of books that I donated to the Salvation Army (I filled my car to the brim three times) and there were about 200 cookbooks. I kept my absolute favorites and this was one of them. I LOVE the recipes and have made this dish so many times in the 20 years I've owned this book. It is delicious, so fresh and tasty.

My favorite recipe that I make ALL the time when the weather is hot, is their gazpacho. It is so refreshing when I can't stand the thought of a hot meal. I always packed some up to take to the beach.

Definitely not for the weather you're having right now, but you should try it for the lake house when the sun is shining bright. It will again, I promise.

Stay warm and safe in all that weather!

Hugs

bj said...

♫♫♪HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO BLONDIE..♫♪♪
I hope this is one of your very best...:))

Love your new cookbook and those beans look amazing.;

We are freezing our butts off out here in West Texas....and it is snowing as we speak.brrrrr
hugs, bj

myletterstoemily said...

hi jane!

thanks for the delicious green bean
recipe. you turned your pneumonia
into a blessing for us!

all this snow will make for a glorious
spring!

love,
lea

jazzy said...

Bravo!
Je suis étonnée qu'il n'y ai pas d'herbes de provence!

Linda@Coastal Charm said...

Jane,
Just checking in on you to find out how you are doing in all that snow...I have been thinking about you and praying that all will be safe.

Blessings,
Linda

Sunny simple life said...

Yum! I love reading cookbooks too. They read like a novel to me.

Marigene said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JANE!
I love cookbooks, have that wonderful cookbook, too.

Janean said...

wow! i like fresh green beans only....no canned for us...unless they're home-canned. your recipe looks wonderful and do-able! yay!!!

Lana K. W. Austin said...

Oooooh.....I love this post!!! So French!!! SO WONDERFUL! Just like you! I need to comment more when I stop by your beautiful blog as I've always adored you! Oh, and I LOVE the background music, too!!

Hugs/blessings,
Lana

vintch said...

what a fabulous idea and yummmmm those beans look delish!

Kathleen said...

Carmie lives here on Long Island. The other night on Worst Cooks the gal cut off the curly end of the verts and was firmly chastised! :)

I read cookbooks like novels too. But I stopped buying cookbooks, don't want to store them. Have to start somewhere!
Hope you are feeling well. It sure is cold!

Terri said...

Ah, yes! Those sound awesome and something Bob and I would love.

Chocolate Dream is more like peanut butter, same consistency. It is awesome on toast! I hope you find it.

I am going to go check out your friend's blog!

Sarah said...

Jane, haricots verts are one of our favorite sides, and this book has long been a "go to" for good, dependable recipes. Yours look delicious! Hope you are staying warm and cozy. Snow is expected here tonight and tomorrow, but thankfully not blizzard conditions. Stay safe! ~ Sarah

GLENDA CHILDERS said...

I gave this cookbook to our oldest daughter when she got her first apartment. And how sweet that your husband brought it to you in the hospital. Love that story.
Fondly,
Glenda

Vicki said...

I'm a cookbook addict too. I love to read them. I dog ear the pages, scan them, make copies for a binder and sadly don't get to them all! This looks delicious. Thanks for sharing!

Liz said...

Yummy! I love green bean anyway! These would be dee-Lish!

Your pink tulips are beautiful too.

~Liz

Picket said...

ohhh looks like something from a fancy restaurant! I would feel like I had alittle money in my pocket just eating those!!!! Gosh that looks good! Hope you stay safe and warm girl..thanks so much for coming by and visiting...Picket

Sarah @ Modern Country Style said...

Hi Jane,

I cook a new meal once a week out of my cook books. I LOVE doing it. It's broadened my cooking and tastes so much and got me out of my cooking rut!!

Sarahx

Kathleen Ellis said...

Good Morning Jane dear!
I have a surprise for you! Stop by and see what it is!
xoxo

Debbie said...

Yum! this looks wonderful Jane! I use a lot of recipes from my Paula Dean books. Her book on soups was one that I used until I made all of them...took a couple of weeks, but we ate them all!
Thank you for the delicious looking recipe.
Have a great weekend!
Debbie@lakehouse

Barbara said...

This looks just wonderful! I, too, seem to like reading cookbooks more than using them. You have inspired me! Thank you so much for your comments. I appreciate them so much. I hope that you are thawing out and keeping warm.

Barbara

Sue (Someone's Mom) said...

I'm a cookbook collector too, I have no idea how many I have...but, I love them! The beans look great. We don't eat garlic, but other than that...we'd love them! Stay warm. We no longer have it coming down, but the ice is so thick on everything and it is so cold it isn't melting. Schools were still closed here today!

Keep Calm and Decorate said...

This looks so good! Thanks for stopping by my blog and for your nice comment.

Sonia said...

Hi!

Hope you are feeling better...I know it exhausting to be sick with pneumonia!! Glad to see you are doing something you love..cooking..with all our winter weather since I got home I've been cooking up a storm! I'll try this recipe as we love fresh green beans! Thanks for sharing and take care of yourself!!

Miss Bloomers

sissie said...

Hi Jane,
You are so funny. Just how do you ignore a blizzard...LOL!
The green been recipe looks delicious and I would make it if I cooked. Hubs does most of the cooking around here so I think I'll pass it along to him. This is what happens when they retire, among other things not so good....but we won't go there.

Thanks for sharing your French dish.

hugs
Sissie

Secret Garden Cottage said...

What a sweet gift from your hubby, Jane! I wish I was more of a cook, as this sounds and looks delcious! I just saw Julie and Julia for the first time last week and loved it. I loved the idea of going through a cookbook from end to end. Maybe, I'll try that but with a 'smaller' cookbook... lol! I have one that just has recipes for muffins... hmmm...
Have a wonderful weekend, Jane! :)
XO,
Jo

Lynn@ The Vintage Nest said...

Oh Jane, I feel for you and all that snow. My son sent me photos of the giant drifts in his yard and then after he shoveled the drive there were mountains of snow . They were so high the children could actually sled down them. Love cookbooks, and like you, can read them just like a novel. I have lots. One day at a yard sale last summer a lady was saling tons of new cookbooks...the church kind. I bought all of them. :) Your recipe sounds divine. Haricots Verts sounds so much more romantic than just green beans. :) LOL...and you are right, she does tap instead of turn. xoxo

Julie@beingRUBY said...

Fabulous Jane
I'm sure cooking up a storm will keep you guys busy and warm through the blizzard..

We are having the opposite.. 42c.. or 107.6F ... no cooking here.. just head in freezer stuff!! haha

Have a lovely weekend.. and stay warm... ciao xxx Julie

La said...

Hi Jane!

I mark the pages of my cookbooks with little post-it notes.

These green beans look as delicious as they are healthy. I look forward to your new series.

Have a great weekend! La

podso said...

I used those same Haricot verts (or similar) from Sams--and they were the best. I simply sauteed in garlic and olive oil after blanching.

A belated happy birthday!

Val said...

These look so delicious!!

Deanna said...

First things first, thank you so much for your thoughts and prayers. I do feel 100 per cent well!

Secondly, my mouth is watering!! I adore green beans and with lemon, garlic, olives..I feel faint!!

I will try this and I am going to try it with the shrimp.

Deanna :D

Karen said...

Hi Jane.
Boy! Are we birds of a feather. I have never counted my cookbooks. Hmmmmm...that might be scary!
I wish we could get some of your cold weather here. It is supposed to rain this coming weekend - my fingers, toes and eyes are crossed that it does - we need it badly!
I was out in the yard this morning soaking up the sun until I got HOT! But I dug a while and transplanted a few things and just did nothing in particular. I thought about your lakehouse all of a sudden and had to come in here and catch up on some blogging. Have you been lately?
But now you've made me want to COOK!
Happy Valentines Day!
Hugs. Karen