Green beans in tomato sauce are a traditional side dish from Puglia. They are very easy to make and extremely tasty.
I am not fond of green beans, so for many years, I have avoided buying them. However, their nutritional benefits are so significant that it was a shame not to introduce them into our diet.
- Spinach frittata, a true Italian classic
- Bake your own rosemary focaccia
- Strawberry and limoncello tiramisù
My daughter also hated them, because at her school they serve green beans plain, boiled or steamed. No seasoning.
Then I remembered one of my aunts, who was from Puglia. We didn’t stay for dinner often, but when we did, she used to prepare these delicious specialities, and we all just sat there stuffing our faces in silence. And one of those specialities were the green beans in tomato sauce!
A couple of phone calls and I got my beautiful new recipe. And when I served it, my daughter at first protested, but after the first reluctant bite, she ate everything and asked for more.
I now often prepare green beans in tomato sauce, and they are my kids’ favourite.
Ingredients (4 servings)
500 g green beans
250 g chopped tomatoes
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp chopped parsley
A pinch of crushed chilli pepper
Salt to taste
1. First wash the green beans under running cold water and clean them by removing both ends (top and tail). Then cook them for 15 minutes in salted boiling water.
2. Meanwhile, prepare the tomato sauce: in a large saucepan, gently heat the extra virgin olive oil, add the crushed garlic and the chilli, and cook on a very low heat until the garlic turns a light golden colour. Add the tomatoes, raise the heat to medium, and cook for 10 minutes.
3. Drain the green beans and add them to the tomato sauce. Season to taste and cook for another 10 minutes.
4. Sprinkle your green beans in tomato sauce with some chopped parsley and serve immediately. They are an excellent side to both fish or meat, and can be also used as a tasty and original pasta sauce.
Silvana Lanzetta. Photo: Private
Silvana Lanzetta was born into a family of pasta makers from Naples and spent 17 years as a part-time apprentice in her grandmother’s pasta factory. She specializes in making pasta entirely by hand and runs regular classes and workshops in London.