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Cajun Smothered Green Beans

Green Beans smothered slowly with bacon and onions, ham and South Louisiana seasonings. Amazing depth of South Louisiana flavor.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time1 hr 50 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Cajun
Keyword: smothered green beans
Servings: 10 Servings
Calories: 191kcal
Author: Sweet Daddy D

Here's What You Need

  • 8 cups fresh or frozen green beans About 2 pounds (See Recipe Notes)
  • 4 slices smoked bacon chopped into 2“ pieces
  • 2 tablespoons AP flour
  • 3 cups yellow onion coarse chop; 2 medium onions
  • 2 tablespoons garlic coarse chop or smash; 4-5 cloves
  • ½ pound ham cubed (See Recipe Notes)
  • 3 cups chicken stock (See Recipe Notes)
  • 2 ½ cups white or red potatoes cut into halves or quarters; 6 to 8 potatoes. (See Recipe Notes)

Herb and Spice Blend

  • 1 tablespoon Creole Seasoning
  • 1 ½ teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoon ground Black Pepper

Here's What You Do

Prparation

  • If using fresh beans, snip the stem end off the and cut into 1 to 1 ½” pieces. (See Recipe Notes)
  • Slice the bacon into 1 to 2-inch pieces and cube the ham.
  • Wash and peel (optional) the potatoes and cut into halves or quarters. Roughly chop the yellow onions and garlic. Measure the remaining ingredients.

To Cook the Green Beans

  • Place the bacon in a cold dutch oven over medium heat and cook until the fat is rendered and the bacon is crispy; about 8 minutes. Remove the bacon from the Dutch oven and set aside.
  • Sear the ham in the bacon grease for about 3 to 4 minutes, until starting to brown. Remove the ham from the Duitch oven and set aside.
  • Add the flour to the bacon grease and whisk until a light roux develops; about 5 minutes. (See Recipe Notes)
  • Add the yellow onions to the roux and fry until the onions are starting to clear; about 5 to 6 minutes.
  • Next add the aromatics-the garlic, Creole seasoning and salt and pepper. Stir to combine and cook for about 2 minutes.
  • Increase the heat to medium-high. Deglaze the Dutch oven with about ½ cup of the stock, making sure to scrape and stir the fond into the roux mixture. (See Recipe Notes).
  • Add the green beans and stir to coat the beans with the roux mixture. Cook the green beans, stirring occasionally until just starting to wilt, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the ham back into the Dutch oven and mix well with the beans.
  • Add enough stock to almost cover the beans. Stir to combine. (See Recipe Notes)
  • Increase the heat to bring the stock to a boil for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Reduce the heat to a simmer. Place the lid on the Dutch oven and simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring from time to time so it does not stick.
  • After 30 minutes, mix in the potatoes and continue to simmer, covered, for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Remove the cover and continue to simmer for another 15 minutes.
  • Test the potatoes by probing with a wooden skewer or fork. They should be soft, but not falling apart. Taste the green beans, they should be soft and slightly overcooked. Adjust the seasonings by adding more Creole seasoning, kosher salt and black pepper, if needed.
  • Break the bacon into smaller pieces and add back to the Dutch oven. Continue to simmer, uncovered for a few minutes until the sauce is thickened and reduced.

Notes

You can use fresh, frozen or canned green beans for this recipe. There is no need to defrost frozen green beans and the cooking time will not be affected.  If using canned beans, make sure to drain them. The cooking time may be reduced by 20 minutes, so add the potatoes earlier in the recipe and test the beans when the potatoes are almost cooked. 
Smoked or andouille sausage can be substituted for the ham. You can also substitute pickled pork or salt pork.
I generally use red potatoes, but white potatoes, Yukon gold, and even Russets will be fine. The potatoes are actually optional in this recipe and it tastes great even without them. Personally, I think the potatoes add a hardy element that I love.  
This recipe is best when it maintains a rustic quality. Peeling the potatoes is optional, just make sure that they are cut into similar size pieces so they all cook in the same amount of time.  A rough chop on the yellow onions and garlic is perfect for this recipe. 
Normally a roux has near equal parts fat and flour, but in this recipe, you will use much less flour than you have bacon grease. The result will still serve to thicken the sauce because of the cooking time and method, but don't expect to get a thick, dark roux. It will still be delicious and you won't over-thicken your gravy. 
It's important to deglaze the Dutch oven before adding the green beans. While you are cooking the roux, onions and aromatics, fond will accumulate on the bottom. There is a ton of flavor and color in that fond, so deglazing will release it from the bottom of the pot so you can mix it into the green beans. 
Leftovers can be kept in the fridge for 3 to 5 days and will probably become more flavorful during that time. The key is keeping it in an airtight container. Reheat in the microwave or in a saucepan on the stove. 
Leftovers can also be frozen, if stored in an airtight container, for up to 10 months. 

Nutrition

Calories: 191kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 811mg | Potassium: 524mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 815IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 2mg

This recipe came from First...You Have a Beer (www.firstyouhaveabeer.com). If you like it, please leave a 5 star rating and a comment on the site and, most importantly, SHARE it with your friends.