Runner Beans with Bacon and Garlic

It´s good to have a bean slicing gadget!

A few days ago Big Man came back from a trip to Granada raving about a different kind of tapas he had eaten that day in a bar.  First of all I need to explain all about Granada and tapas.  Granada (the entire province, not just the city) is famed for and rightly proud of its tapas culture.  In most other regions you are asked if you´d like a tapas to accompany your drink and offered a choice.  This can simply be cheese, jamon or olives or quite sophisticated grilled or fried fish, fillets of meat, or potato or seafood salad.

In Granada you don´t get offered, you just get given.  Most bars will have their own specialities and generally their first tapas will be x, the second y and so on.  Of course, if they serve you something you don´t want or like, you can ask for something different.  They even have a word for going out and moving from bar to bar sampling the best they have to offer.  It´s called “tapear”…isn´t that wonderful?  Sounds so much nicer than going on a pub or bar crawl! It also helps with not ending up with a sore head if you drink alcohol as you are eating as you go along.

So, back to the tapas he ate.  Apparently it was runner beans with bacon.  It sounds simple, and it was, but he said it was delicious and fresh and made a lovely change from the usual fare.  After cross questioning him under a spotlight (ok, I made that last bit up) he told me that he thought the beans had been cooked a little first in water, then stir fried with little cubes of bacon.  Then he thought there might have been garlic and couldn´t make his mind up if there had been tomato, but probably not.  What a great way to use up some of my runner bean glut and to get my super marvelous bean shredder out again!

So that was pretty much it.  I sliced my beans finely (I used about 2 cups) and boiled them for a few minutes then drained them.  I diced a couple of slices of smoked streaky bacon which I fried until slightly brown at the edges, threw in two cloves of crushed garlic and the beans and stir fried them for a few minutes more.

Big Man pronounced them even better than the ones in the bar, mainly because I had used some of my precious stock of lovely English bacon supplied by my pals.  And I´m happy as we have a new quick and tasty dish to use up some of our runner beans which we´re currently picking at a rate of about a kilo a day.