Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Green Beans & Summertime

There are certain things that will whisk me back to summertime in my childhood immediately; the sight of a lightning bug, the sound of a Bob White, the smell of lake water, but nothing takes me back there quicker than fresh green beans.  Just putting my hand into a pile of fresh beans will send me back to hot summers afternoons in North Georgia faster than anything else.  There is just something about the cool texture, the sound and smell of a newly snapped green been that will transport me over the years to a spot next to a grandmother or aunt with a kitchen towel in her lap stringing and snapping away…Maybe those beans were being prepared for supper or maybe to be canned but there was something therapeutic about the experience.  Maybe the therapy was more rest from a long day or maybe it was where these women of my past made peace with theirs.

It is a ritual that I have continued and for some reason I have to do it like they did…with a kitchen towel draped over my lap and a colander to catch my newly strung beans.  Even though I have to buy my beans at the farmer’s market it is one of the simple joys in life…to sit there stringing and snapping beans.  Of course, the ritual isn’t complete until those beans are slow cooked on the stove all afternoon with a piece of side meat for flavor.
Yes, green beans and summertime...


  1. I absolutely remember the scene of my Mom & Gramma, plus a few friends, sitting on the front porch with big pans of peas or beans. Of course, they were also sipping sweet iced tea!

  2. Favorite memories are of snapping beans under the big tree in my grandparents yard. They had a huge farm with cows and chickens, so they were always mooing and clucking. There was enough shade under this tree for the whole family (and I mean HUGE family...big tree). My brother used to run around saying Bob White with the "White" being very high pitched. Good times.

  3. I love this post and one I could have easily written! I remember every summer we had a little garden out back. Shucking corn, shelling bean, you name it. Your post (and even the picture) brings back so many lovely memories that I hope I never forget. Thanks for sharing. xx

  4. We must have had the same Grandmother! I love this post!

  5. One of my favorite memories of my mother (and grandmother) is mom sitting on our screened porch, yes, with a towel over her lap, snapping a huge metal bowl of fresh green beans. Some things are meant to just always be done the same way, huh?


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