Last Updated on 10 months by Tim
Today I’m going to present you one of my go-to vegetable sides whenever I’m short on time. Braised green beans are typically served alongside meat-centric meals. Their flavor goes well with almost anything and their gorgeous green color never fails to excite the eyes.
As a kid, I got to eat a lot of braised green beans my mother prepared for me. Always accompanied by an old German saying: “green beans for my beloved son” (‘Böhnchen für das liebe Söhnchen’). Maybe it’s because green beans are one of the vegetables most children eat without complaint that they are often served whenever kids are at the table.
How to improve the digestibility of braised green beans
The varieties of green beans most commonly used in German cuisine are the bush been (‘Buschbohne’) and princess bean (‘Prinzessbohne’). They aren’t suitable for raw consumption. They should always be cooked for at least 8-10 minutes to completely destroy the toxic phytohaemagglutinin (PHA) protein. Make sure to trim off the stringy ends as well as they are hard to chew.
Savory is the most common spice to season green beans within Germany. It’s no wonder, that its German name literally translates to bean weed (‘Bohnenkraut’). Besides its peppery aroma, one of the reasons that it is so commonly added to green beans is that it aids the digestive process. Green beans contain a high amount of trisaccharides which our body has no ability to digest. They end up being digested by our gut bacteria which can cause bloating.
The tannins found in savory can prevent excess gas formation in the gut and help to calm the stomach. Even in Germany, it can be challenging to find fresh or even dried savory. So if you struggle to source it, you can replace it with thyme which has a similar flavor profile and can also aid digestion.