You will need:
- Fresh green beans (feel free to cheat and buy the steam in bag fresh ones in the produce section)
- 1 white onion or several shallots
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup slived or sliced almonds
- 3 tbs orange juice (or Tropical Mangosteen if you're fancy like that)
- Olive oil
- 4 tbs balsamic vinegar (or more, if you're obsessed with the flavor, like me!)
1. Wash and prep your green beans. Snip the tips off with kitchen shears. Try to have your two year old help you. Don't worry if he snaps the beans in half. Just make sure you are faster than he is so less beans end up wonky.
2. Steam your green beans. Use a steamer or steaming basket on your pot. Okay fine, just boil them if you want. It truly doesn't matter as long as you don't overcook them. Let the beans get a nice pretty green color. Fork tender with a little crispness.
At this point your baby girl might be hungry. Give her a sock.
3. Slice your onion or shallots very thin. Or chop them into pieces. Depends how obvious you want those onions to look. I used chopped onions that I had frozen leftover from Thanksgiving. Shallots are tasty. If you want to get frisky you can fry some up before you do anything else and use as another topper.
4. Sautee the onions in some olive oil until translucent. Add your basalmic vinegar and juice. Simmer until the liquid is reduced by half. Stir in your green beans, almonds and cranberries. Coat them well and cook until the beans are thoroughly reheated.
I served mine with teriyaki flank steak (I heart Soy Vay Veri Veri Teriyaki!) that I grilled up on my George Foreman. Also served with a corn casserole I found on AllRecipes.com. Super delish.
Now I need a little advice. How do you train your toddler to stay seated at the dinner table? At daycare their little chairs have seatbelts. I don't want to do that at home. Maybe a cool booster seat will make him feel cool enough to stay seated? I do food bribe him with the prospect of dessert if he eats his healthy meal first. We also bribe with "Big Bubbles Bath", one of his favorite things as long as you don't wash his hair.
He just loves to get up and be a little man. He will literally hold up one finger and say, "Be wite back. I go check somefing." And then he will go check a toy and come back. Last week he said, "Be wite back Mommy. I go check somefing." And I sat there and watched my two year old go pick up his Handy Manner screwdriver (Felipe, the Phillip's head) and bring it to the chair leg I just banged my knee on and "fix it" by turning the screwdriver on the wood and saying, "Kurn kurn kurn. Kurn kurn kurn. Okay, there go!" And then returning the tool to his toy box and then. finally. coming back to sit down at the table. And then pretend to bite me. And say "Chomp chomp. Crocodino coming!!"
Nights like that I get so exhausted. I've cooked dinner while nursing Devyn (don't ask). Then plated it up. Then gotten sad that hubs' job kept him late. AGAIN. Then set the table for Cadester and I and put Devyn in a bouncer/exersaucer/Bumbo and ate and bribed Cade. Then he plays. And it's annoying. And it's cute. And I alternate between eating my own food, sighing, reminding him to eat, sighing, laughing at his little antics. It's exhausting. But so awesome. Nobody has to give me a paycheck or pat me on the back. I feel awesome when I cook at home. It feels good to have a pretty and totally f'ing yummy meal on the table. It sucks when the kid won't eat. But it's worth the effort. Even if it means that after a full day at work I come home, feed the kids, bathe them, bathe myself, and then don't get to sit down or relax until 9pm.
Now it's 9:45pm and I have shot my resolution to be in bed by 9:30. Gotta go prep my coffee to brew at 5:00am on automatic so I actually have a reason to get out of my king sized dreamland tomorrow.
p.s. If you know someone who can redesign my blog without costing a fortune I need some good referrals! I want my blog to be all themed out like baby girl's nursery.