Haricots Verts a l’Oignon et Lard

The addition of onion, lean bacon and garlic-flavoured butter to green beans makes Haricots Verts a VOnion et Lard (ah- ree-koh vair ah lohn-yohn ay lahr) a marvellous accompaniment to cold meat and fish dishes.

1 ½ pints water

1 teaspoon salt

1 lb. green beans, trimmed

2 oz. butter

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 medium-sized onion, finely chopped

4 lean bacon slices, diced

In a large saucepan, bring the water to the boil over high heat. Add the salt and the beans. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the beans for 5 to 15 minutes, or until they are just tender. Remove the pan from the heat and drain the beans in a colander. Set the beans aside.

In a large frying-pan, melt the butter over moderate heat. When the foam sub-sides add the garlic, onion and bacon to the pan. Cook them, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the onion is soft and translucent but not brown.

Stir in the beans and reduce the heat to low. Cook the mixture, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes.

Remove the pan from the heat and transfer the mixture to a warmed serving dish. Serve at once.

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