A very close relative of beans, peas and lentils, the pod is also considered a type of legume.
In some regions of Brazil, this green and long pod is known as pasta pod.
But regardless of the name you give it, one thing is certain: learning how to cook green beans will make all the difference in your life.
And this post here will help you cook green beans the right way so that you can better enjoy all the flavor and nutritional properties of the food.
We will see?
The pod is a very nutritious legume. For starters, it is rich in B vitamins, vitamin C, folic acid and some very important minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and iron.
And speaking of iron, did you know that green beans are a great ally in the diet of people with anemia? Yeah! The high percentage of this mineral in the food contributes to ending anemia, in addition to helping to strengthen the immune system.
The pod is also considered an antioxidant. And it’s not just because it contains vitamin C, but because of another substance known as lutein.
This substance helps to fight free radicals and, consequently, contributes to the prevention of cancer and various types of chronic diseases.
The magnesium in the pod, on the other hand, helps in muscle health, supporting the development and growth of muscles. So, if you practice physical activities you can manage to insert the pod in your menu.
Intestinal health also thanks the consumption of the pod. This is because the high levels of fibers present in the legume assist in the proper functioning of the intestine.
Not to mention that fibers are always welcome in the diet of those looking to lose weight and lose weight.
And did you know that the pod is good even for improving mood? Folic acid contributes to the production of hormones responsible for well-being, such as dopamine and serotonin.
All the nutritional benefits of the pod can be used in the daily diet in different recipes and preparations.
The most common way is in the form of salad. But the pod can still be incorporated into meat stews, soups, farofas and, of course, everyday white rice.
How to choose pod
The whole process of preparing and cooking the beans begins at the fair or at the supermarket, at that exact moment when you need to make the selection among the best pods in the gondola.
And how do you know which pod to take home?
Simple. Start by looking at the color. The pods ideal for consumption should be very green and with a shiny skin.
Also note if there are brown or black spots on the surface of the pod, if so, disregard it and choose another one.
The pods should also be crispy. Do the test by lightly squeezing the tip of the pod, if it bends easily it is a sign that it has passed the point.
Another trick for choosing the pods is to notice if the seeds are very apparent or forming protuberances on the surface. Ideally, you shouldn’t even notice the seeds inside.
How to cook green beans: 4 different ways
There are basically 4 different ways to cook beans. The trick, in any of these methods, is to set the cooking point that should be al dente.
This is because the pods must not overcook to avoid losing color or texture. In general, a few minutes is sufficient.
In hot water
Hot water is the most common method of preparing the pods. The process is simple: just wash the pods well, cut the tips and then add one by one inside the pan with hot water and a pinch of salt.
The proportion of water should be about 4 times greater than that of pods. That is, for each cup of pods add 4 cups of water.
Let the beans cook for about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat, drain the water and season the way you prefer.
The tip is to use olive oil, salt and pepper. It is also worth adding fresh herbs, such as thyme, parsley and basil.
The classic method of steaming also works with green beans. The procedure is very similar to the previous one.
Start by washing and cutting the ends of the pods. Then place the pods in the cooking basket.
Count about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from heat and season as desired.
In the microwave
Want to cook beans in the microwave? Okay too.
In this case, wash, cut and place the pods in a microwave-safe pot with approximately 2 to 4 tablespoons of water, depending on the amount of pods.
Then line the pot with plastic wrap (make holes for the steam to escape). Turn the device on at high power for 3 minutes and you’re done.
Better than cooking is getting the pod ready to eat. And the best way to do that is to opt for the braised.
Here, everything is very simple and fast.
First wash and cut the ends of the pod. Then slice it into slices.
Take a frying pan and pour a drizzle of olive oil. If desired, add finely chopped garlic for extra flavor.
Complete the seasoning with salt, pepper and herbs of your choice. Add the sliced pods and sauté them until they are al dente, so it maintains the crunchy texture.
How to conserve pods
You can also choose to freeze the pod, keeping it for longer.
For this it is necessary to resort to the bleaching technique, which is nothing more than cooking the pod in boiling water for 3 minutes and immediately after that time immerse it in a bowl with ice and ice water for another 3 minutes.
After that time, drain the water from the pod and store it in jars to use whenever and however you want.
But if you just want to keep the pod in the refrigerator, then just cook it and put it in a little pot.
In this way the pod can be kept for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.