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Green up your holiday table with haricots verts

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Even though green bean casserole is a staple on American holiday tables, some people would rather eat a simpler, healthier style of green beans. A platter of roasted beans answers the call for a better-for-you side veggie.

One cup of green beans (in French, haricots verts) supplies a good amount of vitamins C (20 percent) and K (18 percent) per daily value. The rich-green vegetable also provides manganese (11 percent), which is an important antioxidant mineral, and phytonutrients.

Other health benefits of green beans include cardiovascular and anti-inflammatory support. Those with type 2 diabetes could benefit from the vegetable's high fiber content, as well.

Fresh green beans are delicious served raw alongside low-fat sour cream dips and hummus. They can be chopped and added to soups and stews for added fiber and color. And they can be sauteed alongside other vegetables, such as broccoli and cauliflower.

In the summertime, look for fresh produce at any of Wichita's farmers' markets; in the cooler months, check out area grocery stores for the best selection.

One simple yet fabulous recipe calls for the beans to be roasted — keeping it nutritious while bringing out a richer, fuller flavor. Try it with baked salmon or seared scallops, or as part of the holiday feast.

Roasted haricot verts

1½–2 pounds green beans
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1-2 bulbs garlic, cloves peeled

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Trim both ends of green beans.
  3. In large bowl, toss green beans with garlic cloves, olive oil, salt and pepper and spread out evenly on parchment-lined baking sheet.
  4. Roast, stirring once halfway through, until lightly caramelized and crisp tender, 12–15 minutes.

Bon appétit!

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