Baked Green Beans and Chickpea Salad



too hot to eat hot. I  took out the ingredients to cook a lentil soup. Couldn’t picture me and Anatol sitting on the table (why “on” the table? Who sits on the tables- not intentionally to protest something. We sit by the table, no?), slurping hot liquid. but not hot enough to turn on the oven I guess. i am not famous for being consistent.

Bought some green flat beans. Flat green beans. The kind that you can’t find at a regular market. I got them from the Pasadena Farmer’s Market. The school football team’s name and symbol hovers over you while you are hovering over green flat flat green beans. I wondered how people will cook these. They know the round one- the one you (not I) put fried onions for Christmas. Maybe it symbolizes sacrifice or something. You sacrifice the good vegetable for the birth of the holly boy.

Anyway-s, we’d cook it yummly in Turkey but I wanted to turn on the oven because I wouldn’t dare to cook some soup because it is too hot but not hot enough maybe. Never mind. I found this recipe:


Italian Green Beans with Pancetta and Braised Garlic

  • Ingredients:
  • 1-1/2 lbs Italian-style flat green beans (pole beans)
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 lb pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1/4 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 350°F.


Peel the garlic and slice the cloves lengthwise into 4 to 6 slivers. Place them in a small covered saucepan and add the olive oil. Cook over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes until tender and sweet. Do not brown.

While the garlic braises, fry the pancetta in a large etc etc etc…

This is how I made it: I did preheat the oven. no pancetta but bacon. A good, thick slab. Little less olive oil because it is just damn too hot. Forget braising whatever. I put the onions and bacon and garlic and olive oil into a cast iron pot that I keep imagining my great grand children will inherit. When the onions looked transparent (that sound so sexy yet if you cooked it just a little longer, it would really be sexy, not only sound sexy. You won’t because you’ll be cooking the whole thing in the oven later on so you just stop when things are transparent.)

I added the green flat flat green beans green. (I take out the sides with a knife- just in case the beans have thin but tough fishbone-like sides. You don’t have to. i do because I am turkish, and I need to torture myself in every possible way I can while cooking for the pleasure of the mouth that will take approximately 5 minutes. Sounds like many torturous things we do for that pleasure.)

i added the pepper, vinegar and water, mixed them up, covered the whole thingy, put it in the oven for 45 minutes like the recipe suggested. They looked lifeless, so I took off the lid and baked it for 15 more minutes. when I took the whole thing out, all the beans had some color on their cheeks.

I’d eat this in room temp. To accompany this, I am making some kind of chickpea salad. Juicy raisins, scallions, almonds, chickpeas, carrot tops that you need to beg so the seller will not cut them away and toss them out (they can be bitter! Use your taste buds and brain and don’t add too much if they are.) toss them with some olive oil, salt, pepper, lemon juice, mustard facial and place the whole salad on watercress. Now I am not boiling anymore! I will put a handsome slice of melon that i got from the farmer’s market because its smell literally threw a hook into my nostril. The woman farmer lady told me what kind it was but I don’t remember the name. It has a bouquet like no other: a droplet of durian into passion fruit- mango mix. pale green inside and yellow skin outside with slice instructions pre-drawn by nature. Some fruity white wine or better yet chilled Ethiopian honey wine would go good with this I think. Anatol would not argue.


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