Green beans, French beans, string beans, fine beans

or haricots vert, if you’re feeling up market.

They’re available all year round with the British season cropping in the summer.

Green beans are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, are low in calories, have a low glycemic index and are particularly good sources of vitamins K and C, manganese, folate and fiber.

Green beans are quick and easy to prepare, the stalks just need chopped off. Take a look at the video to see how I do it.

Gather a handful of beans, tap them stalk side down on your board, turn them over and cut through about 1 cm down from the end. A lot of people remove the curly tails too, but this is not essential and once they’e cooked, you don’t really notice them.

If you do want to remove the tails, just turn the bunch of beans over, tap the ends on the board and slice through the ends with your knife.

The beans are now ready to cook.

What to look for

French beans need to be fresh, they will have a clean smell and snap sharply when broken in half.

How to Cook Green Beans

Green beans are not particularly nice raw, but steam, blanch or stir fry them and they become slim, elegant pods of deliciousness. They’ll take about 5 mins to cook, depending on the method and variety. If you’re using them in a salad, refresh under cold running water to preserve the colour.

The recipes below use green beans, give them a go!