Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Vegan Holiday: Roasted Green Beans with Orange Balsamic Glaze

Hello again! Whew, I certainly have been cooking quite a bit these last few days! I whipped up this recipe last night with some green beans and few other simple ingredients I had in the kitchen. I served these for dinner with sauteed seitan, leftover Thanksgiving stuffing, and cheezy potato casserole (recipe coming soon!) and Mike couldn't stop raving about how great these beans were. What's more, it's a simple and no-fuss side dish (washing and trimming the beans was the most labor intensive part) that's just a little bit fancy, so it's great to serve with a Christmas or other holiday meal where you're putting most of your energy into the main dish or desserts. These definitely beat out plain ol' steamed veggies as a side dish worthy of your holiday table.  I will definitely be making these as part of the Fur Ninja Family Christmas dinner!

These beans are made delicious with the addition of maple syrup and orange juice, and the sweetness is tempered with balsamic vinegar, some bitterness from orange marmalade and a final sprinkle with orange zest.  Then the whole shebang is roasted in the oven until the beans are tender crisp and delicious.  I think they are great as is, but if you have picky eaters or little ninjas that might be turned off by the balsamic, simply leave it out of the recipe and your beans will be left with a simple sweet orange glaze that might just make your little dudes eat their veggies.

Whoever, you're serving this to, make a double batch if you've got a crowd.  Realistically, this dish would make 5 servings if you eat like a normal human, but Mike and I went through nearly the whole pound of beans last night with just the two of us because we're "seconds" type people when something is really delicious.  Doubling this recipe is just as easy, so make a whole ton of these delicious little veggies and impress your guests (or just yourself!) this Christmas.

Roasted Green Beans with Orange Balsamic Glaze 
Time: 30 minutes
Makes 5 servings 


1 lb fresh green beans, washed and ends trimmed
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
1/3 cup orange juice
2 teaspoons orange marmalade
1/2 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
zest from 1/2 an orange

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. 
In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, vinegar, maple syrup, orange juice, marmalade, salt, and pepper.  Add the washed and trimmed green beans and toss well to make sure the beans are coated evenly.  Spread the green beans on a baking sheet or large baking pan in a single layer.  If there is any remaining liquid in the bowl, drizzle it over the beans. 
Bake the beans in the oven for 25 minutes, checking halfway through and tossing them with a spatula so they cook evenly.  The beans should be slightly wrinkled and crisp-tender.
Remove from the oven and place the beans and any remaining liquid in a serving bowl.  Sprinkle with orange zest before serving.

Tips and Tricks:

1. As I always say, be sure to use 100% pure maple syrup and not the fake sugar-water concoctions that come in plastic bottles.  Read labels!

2. This recipe would also be delicious with asparagus!

So that's it.  See?  I told you it was easy!  And they're really delicious!  Here's a picture of the meal we had last night with a preview of my next recipe post:

Clockwise from top: leftover Thanksgiving stuffing, roasted green beans with orange balsamic glaze, cheezy potato casserol, sauteed seitan with tomatoes and gravy
The cheezy potato casserole is another yummy, vegan holiday worthy dish that neither Mike nor I could get enough of.  That recipe coming next, along with holiday upside down cake, gingerbread swirl cheesecake, fennel braised tempeh, cornbread and brussels sprouts stuffing, and quite possibly some cookie or candy recipes thrown in.  I've also got a mango and some coconut in the fridge that I might throw together a light dessert with as a break from all this heavy holiday fare.  So lots more to come; I'm here to help you with all of your vegan holiday season needs.  Until next time - warm hearts and full bellies!


The Fur Ninja

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