No-Ordinary Green Beans for Summer (Week 24)

Add a few pounds of pretty summer green beans to your grocery list, people, because this week's "Seasonal Seven" recipe collection is gonna pull at those green bean heartstrings. Suppers? Check. Salads? Of course. Sides. Naturally! Is it too strong to promise a garden's worth of keepers here? Nope!

Seasonal Sundays, a weekly newsletter ♥, a seasonal collection of recipes and life ideas in and out of the kitchen.

Welcome to Seasonal Sundays ...

As ever, thank you for welcoming me into your InBox and RSS feed reader. It's your kitchens, your lives, I conjure while writing ...

It's been a week of travel and Canadian cousins. In a bit of serendipity, the same week I learned of the loss of my second-youngest cousin on that side, we spent a few days in Toronto with the oldest.

For those of us lucky to have cousins, to actually know and love our cousins, the timing meant extra reminiscing about our parents, our shared aunts and uncles, our grandparents, our siblings and their children, our other cousins, the big Winnipeg family gatherings in our childhoods, the back-n-forth trips we all took during summer visits, our moms pinning notes to our jackets before putting us on the bus traveling back 'n' forth between Winnipeg and Thunder Bay daily, stopping briefly at my own small-town home in northern Minnesota. Imagine, the trust, putting a kid alone on a bus like that, including a border crossing. Did we even have passports? Was that pinned "note" with name, destination and a phone number enough? (Fact check. Nope. Passports weren't required between the U.S. and Canada until 2008/2009, well past 9/11.)

And the thing about cousins, especially as we grow older, is that these are the people who've likely known us the longest, who share the most history, who can both understand and contradict from where we've come.

My cousin Lynda and her husband now live east of Toronto. She's ten years older so remembers more about the early years, the family lore, the family drama.

She adored my mother and in turn, oh, how I adored her, oh, so much bewitching teenage and young-adult glamour! A few summers, I tagged along at her summer job organizing kids activities at a city parks across Winnipeg. Long later, when work took me to Toronto, I stayed an extra few days. More recently, one year, they came to St. Louis but it was for a big party with lots of people, no real chance to catch up. Other visits were for her sons' weddings, her mother's funeral.

So this visit, no party, no wedding, no funeral, we realized how long it had been since we'd really sat down to visit. And oh, did we ever stay up late to laugh and tell stories. Oh, did we smile when our husbands got along so well, carrying on their own conversations.

Are there cousins in your life? Maybe catch up now. You just never know ...

In Praise Of ...

  • ... The wonderful feel-good movie "The Beautiful Game" on Netflix, four of us watched in appreciation, remarking all the way through, "This is so good. So good."

  • ... family parties, not weddings or funerals, where "both sides" of the family gather in celebration of something fun or for no reason at all ...

  • ... painting the front door the day you take possession, a lesson from a grandniece who's an architect and a natural-born let's-get-going DIYer who's just moved into a tiny two-bedroom home and is already making it her own. Her paint choice? An arresting robin's egg blue which makes me so excited to see what she does with the rest of the place ... to say nothing that she's now just 3 miles away ... yes, we could walk!

THE SEASONAL SEVEN: No-Ordinary Green Beans

For this week's recipes, I aimed for recipes with summer flavors and combinations that ...

  • Fit in across the meal spectrum, suppers, stews, sides and salads
  • Are simple enough for everyday, special enough for company
  • Call for just a few added ingredients, really letting the beans shines

Summer Vegetable Stew ♥, a soupy stew made with fresh vegetables, a great master recipe and a rainbow of summer vegetables, full of different flavors and colors and textures. Weight Watchers Friendly. Vegan. Gluten Free. Paleo.

Best Ever New Potatoes & Green Beans, a classic summer combo ♥ Weeknight Easy, Weekend Special. Budget Friendly. Gluten Free. Rave Reviews.

Simple Skillet Green Beans, another easy weeknight vegetable side dish ♥

Fresh Green Bean Salad with Asian Dressing ♥, re-inventing the picnic favorite.

Summer Green Bean Salad, another easy summer salad ♥, just steamed green beans, sweet corn and Spiced Pickled Red Onions. WW Friendly. Vegan. Gluten Free.

Fresh Three-Bean Salad, another easy summer salad ♥, made skinny with less oil and less sugar. WW Friendly. Gluten Free. Low Carb. Vegan.

Skillet-Stewed Green Beans with Tomato & Basil ♥ All the best tastes of summer in one pan.

Favorite Green Bean Recipes ♥ Sides to salads, soups to suppers and more.

Soups & Salads Especially for ... June

In June, regional food differences really begin to appear. Florida and California have been dripping with juicy tomatoes for a couple of months while here in the middle of the country (Missouri, specifically St. Louis), we're still pinching suckers off our tomato plants and restlessly tapping our feet in anticipation. That's why I spent an entire year collecting favorite salads and soups for A Veggie Venture. And what a collection it is! Here's a sample.

Chilled Green Bean Salad with Rosemary & Garlic Oil, another healthy summer salad ♥ Vegan. Low Carb. WW Friendly.

Tired of the same-old salads? Check out Seasonal Soups & Salads for June, a monthly feature ♥ A Veggie Venture

What's Brand-Spankin' New?!

Wondering about a recipe from the last while? Check Recent Recipes from Kitchen Parade and Recent Vegetable Recipes from A Veggie Venture.

Light & Lemony Crab Salad, another meat salad ♥ Easy, inexpensive protein.


Please know, YOU really matter here. Your comments and email (my current address is in the FAQs) encourage and inspire and motivate and some times make me laugh out loud or turn a little teary. It's a good day when I can "see" what you're cooking, "hear" how a recipe worked out, "know" what you're loving.

Peach Blueberry Cake ♥, a rustic summer cake, part tart, part deep-dish pie. Rave reviews!
  • "This was amazing and so quick and easy to put together. Thank you for sharing." ~ Janet
  • THE RECIPE Peach Blueberry Cake Country-rustic and delicious! (PIN This)

June: Reader Favorites

How to Brine Pork Chops ♥, my favorite brine for pork chops, adding moisture and flavor to pork that's bred, these days, for leanness.

June: Lost Recipes

Mint Julep Pork Chops ♥, skillet-cooked pork chops with a wonderful bourbon-mint sauce.

The Kitchen Parade Almanac: Looking Ahead ...

A collection of recipes and ideas especially for Father's Day ♥
  • THE COLLECTION Father's Day Recipes Hand-picked recipes destined to put smiles on dad's faces everywhere!
  • SO MANY HOLIDAYS TO CELEBRATE! Recipes by Holiday All organized for easy browsing and exploration.

A collection of recipes especially for Juneteenth ♥
  • THE COLLECTION Juneteenth Explore food traditions for America's new national holiday on June 19th.
  • A PERSONAL ESSAY, RECIPES & MENU Finding Juneteenth An evening of serendipity in Louisville.

A collection of recipes for Midsummer celebrations ♥
  • THE COLLECTION Midsummer An especially personal collection of recipes, many from the time I lived in Finland.
  • SO MANY HOLIDAYS TO CELEBRATE! Recipes by Holiday All organized for easy browsing and exploration.

A collection of recipe ideas for Canada Day ♥

A collection of hand-selected recipes Fourth of July celebrations ♥

A Quick Peek Into a Real-Life Kitchen

Just so you know, everything's not all pretty pictures around here, in the background is a pile of dirty dishes. And just like many (all?) of us, come five o'clock, I too draw a blank about what to make for supper, despite so many recipes I so dearly love. Here's a quick peek from this week.

Easy Easy Magical Jello Bites, another fun idea for kids ♥ Guaranteed to light up kids' eyes!
  • THIS WEEK was 80% out of town but I managed to make three coconut cakes (one a test cake) and "Auntie Al's Famous Jello" for a family party. Two of my favorite Littles picked "pineapple" for this party, possibly a new Jello flavor? New to me, anyway. I was surprised and impressed how many kids could identify the flavor, very cool. Anyway I just can't recommend these enough for any gathering with Lotsa Littles. So good!
  • THE RECIPE Easy Easy Magical Jello Bites Guaranteed to make kids' eyes light up! (PIN This)

Looking Back ...

Good to Know!

Jams, Pickles & Preserves, a recipe collection ♥ Sweet to Savory. Canning and No Canning Required.

Silly (But Fun?!) Food Holidays

The Best No-Recipe Recipe I Made This Week

Leftover Pork Tenderloin + Onion + Sandwich Rolls = Excellent Warm Sandwiches

This was dual inspiration: mine (to use the tenderloin from two nights before) and my cousin Lynda's (to fry some onions, then gently warm thin slices of tenderlion, put out hoagie rolls halved, mustard, mayo, tomato and lettuce). But it has me thinking, we need more warm sandwiches in our lives!

Don't Be a Stranger ...

I'd love to hear from you. Comment, send me a quick e-mail (my current address is in the FAQs), dot-dash in Morse code, build a fire for smoke signals, launch a message in a bottle, send a Christmas letter, get the dog to yip, toss me a note wrapped in a rubberband, write a message in the sky, scratch a note in the sand, listen to a seashell, tuck a question into a plastic Easter egg, whatever.

  • Any advice for Seasonal Sundays?
  • Just one thing that would make it more useful for you?
  • Anything else? Chime in, chat away.

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Quick Suppers are Kitchen Parade favorites and feature recipes easy on the budget, the clock, the waistline and the dishwasher. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail, you'll find my current address in the FAQs. How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. When you make my recipes, I'd love to know your results! Just leave a comment below or better still, on the specific recipe's page.

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Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.