On The Homestretch & A Green Bean Salad

So, it’s come to this and I am really not sure if it’s even such a bad thing. I have a confession:  After a beautiful morning swim at Barton Springs pool, I admit I then spent a good portion of my Mother’s Day writing a chapter on the importance of babies pooping on a regular basis. Well, to be exact, the chapter is on the vital role of healthy elimination that begins at birth.

I don’t know if I would have believed this of myself five years ago when my dream Mother’s Day was to sleep in, be served breakfast in bed, and read. While there’s nothing wrong with that scenario (At all!), it’s just not where I happen to be right now. In reflection, I also can’t think of any greater tribute to mothers than dedicating my time to a book that offers support as we raise the next generation. If I have any positive influence, it will be for a generation that is healthier and wiser about maintaining their own health.

That’s my true confession of the week with the exciting news that the end is in sight! (At least as far as my writing is concerned anyway.) It won’t be long before we can pass this manuscript of Supporting Babies and Young Children with Gemmotherapy along for editing and then design. Sighs of relief will be audible from all of us in the office and no doubt my sweet family.

And now a bit about green beans…

Haree Phalee Salad
(Green Beans,Cashew, and Coconut)

I haven’t met a vegetable I don’t love but some admittedly are just so-so. Green beans happen to fall in that category for me, most likely because I was raised on the Del Monte canned version that don’t taste like any vegetable I know. As green bean season hits it’s short stride here in Texas before the oppressive heat sets in I found myself searching for something new. Fortunately for me, my own copy of Meera Sodha’s Fresh India arrived in the post this weekend offering several enticing options. The flavor combinations of tamarind, cashew, and coconut won me over and the results may have turned me into a green bean consumer!

700g green beans
40g fresh or desiccated coconut (I used large flakes)
2 Tbl oil (I used coconut)
½ tsp black mustard seeds
4 shallots
150g unsalted raw cashews
1 ½ tsp tamarind paste
1 cayenne chili or a pinch of cayenne powder to taste
¾ tsp salt

1. Clean green beans, remove tops and tails, and blanch in large pot of salted boiling salted water for 3-4 minutes. Beans should be tender yet crisp. Rinse in cold water immediately to stop the cooking process and allow to dry.

2. Dry roast coconut in pan over low heat, tossing gently, take care not to burn. Set aside on small plate to cool.

3. In a large skillet, heat the oil, adding mustard seeds and cooking until they pop.

4. Add sliced shallots, sauteing over low/medium heat until soft and slightly brown.

5. Add cashews cooking further until golden brown.

6. Add tamarind paste, chilies or chili powder and salt followed by the green beans. Toss to mix.

7. Once beans are warmed through, transfer to plate to serve.