I bartered this summer with some dear friends that grow rattlesnake green beans for a loaf of my Zucchini Pineapple Bread and a jar of Sweet Heat Pickles. Bartering is a blessing! The blessing comes when your friend allows you to give them something that you hand made, grew, painted, designed or baked! The bonus is that you receive something that they had a hand in making or creating.
It not only helps both parties involved, it brings back an old tradition of tradition of trading something of value without using money. True, you can barter with anything, but my favorite is home grown and handmade from the heart! It’s like sharing a part of yourself with your friends and neighbors.
In South, there’s quite a debate these days on how long to cook fresh green beans and whether or not to throw in the traditional smoked ham hock for flavor. I’m somewhere between the generation before me that might cook them for a couple of hours until uber tender and the ham hock meat is falling off the bone and the generation after me that likes them “crisp-tender” and wouldn’t dream of adding that much saturated fat in their pot o’ beans because they are eating “clean”.
I cook my fresh green beans for 30 minutes in chicken broth for flavor and texture. I do love the flavor of the smoked ham hock but lean toward eating on the light side most of the time, so I sprinkle crisp, thick-cut bacon on my green beans just before serving. I may or may not be guilty of frying an extra piece of bacon just to eat!
Click below to PRINT the recipe.