So, here’s what happened and why I had leftover holiday green beans:
I served simple, fresh green beans with a little butter for Thanksgiving. The reason I didn’t fancy them up is because the “star” of the vegetable side dishes is always my sister’s, Gail’s, Spinach Casserole. With all the other side dishes (mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, cornbread stuffing), I didn’t want to have another vegetable casserole, but did want to have an alternative vegetable just in case someone didn’t like Gail’s Spinach Casserole (I shudder to think! Even the little kids in our family love Gail’s Spinach Casserole).
So, they were par-boiled ahead of time and placed in a covered disposable aluminum pan for fast reheating in the oven along with the other side dishes. Twenty minutes into reheating, the green beans were steaming steam! Serious steam. When I opened the lid to check on them, steam was pouring out. So, I took them out of the oven and set them aside while the rest of the side dishes were baking and reheating in the oven.
And, later, much later, I forgot to reheat them! In the flurry that happens when everything comes together at the last minute and everyone is helping to get everything on the table, these green beans were scooped up and spooned into a serving bowl and off they went, to the table. And, they were cold.
So, a few people ate a few of them, but the rest of the green beans remained untouched and Charlie and I ended up with enough leftover green beans to feed an army.
The next day I gussied them up with bacon, bacon grease, slivered garlic and Leftover Holiday Green Beans were on our dinner plates for the next 3 nights! But, because they were fresh green beans to start with, then reheated in bacon grease and garlic, they were delicious! I mean, after all, who doesn’t like bacon? I had a friend of mine, who is a vegetarian, actually tell me she was a “bacon-tarian” because while she is a practicing vegetarian, she throws caution aside whenever bacon is under her nose!
I can relate. Bacon’s a serious addition!
If, by chance, you don’t have leftover green beans to start with, place your fresh green beans in a large non-stick skillet, fitted with a lid, add about a cup of water and let them steam for several minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are tender-crisp. Then, remove them from the skillet, add the bacon and fry the bacon until crisp. Remove the bacon to a paper towel to drain and add the garlic to the skillet. Saute’ over medium heat for a few minutes and add the green beans back to the skillet and continue sauteing’ until done. Crumble the reserved bacon and scatter over green beans and serve.
And, if by chance you have leftover green beans from your Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, here’s how to gussie them up as Leftover Holiday Green Beans:
- 2 pounds leftover pre-cooked fresh green beans
- 3 slices bacon
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp.
- Remove to paper towel-lined plate to drain.
- Add sliced garlic to bacon grease in the skillet and saute' over medium heat for a minute stirring constantly (do not burn!).
- Add pre-cooked green beans to garlic and bacon grease and stir to coat.
- Sprinkle with salt and pepper, stir and taste; correct seasoning, if necessary.
- Continue to cook for a few minutes more, stirring occasionally, until beans are hot.
- Crumble bacon and sprinkle over beans and stir to combine.
- Remove beans to serving dish and serve immediately.
Are you in love with my “Fork It Over” serving fork? I’ve had this one, made by the Mud Pie Company, for several years. You can get a similar on Amazon:
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Need more side dish inspiration? Check out these earlier posts from Toot Sweet 4 Two’s archives: