Yellow wax beans lack chlorophyll and will retain their beautiful golden color when cooked.
Purple beans contain anthocyanins (the purple pigment) that disappear when beans are cooked.
A good indication of when to harvest is to reference the days to maturity for the specific variety. Pick green beans when pods are young and tender, just before the seeds begin to swell. Beans will “snap” when you bend and break them. If they are immature, they won’t snap!
Fresh unwashed green beans should remain fresh for up to a week when stored in a reusable container or plastic bag in the refrigerator.
Versatile in culinary preparation, garden beans can be eaten raw, steamed, boiled, stir-fried, grilled, or baked. For the best eating experience, cooked green beans should still have a crisp texture and an appetizing bright green color.
Green beans pair well with a variety of herbs, spices, and flavors. Parsley, rosemary, sage, savory, thyme, a splash of lemon juice, or a pat of butter are very popular additions to bean dishes. You can’t go wrong with the simple addition of garlic and onions. There are some who swear green beans cry out for bacon bits or a dollop of bacon grease added to the cooking pot.
Green beans are bred for eating fresh or processing/preserving. Some varieties are well suited for both. Processing green beans are better able to retain their beautiful color and texture for canning, pickling, and freezing. If you look forward to gifting out jars of pickled green beans, a processing green bean will yield you the best results.