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Winter Gardens and Yellow Beans with Ham, Garlic, and Onions

“It was such a pleasure to sink one’s hands into the warm earth,
to feel at one’s fingertips the possibilities of the new season.”
Kate Morton

There is something deeply satisfying about reaching the end of a day spent gardening. To ease up on aching legs, rub your sore back, and look around at neatly dug gardens mulched with shiny yellow straw, knowing that within a few weeks or months there will be all sorts of good things to eat.

This week has been spent outside in glorious Autumn sunshine digging, weeding, watering, mulching, planting, and planning. I’ve loved sorting through seed packets and choosing the veggies we want to feast on this winter: celeriac and ruby red Swiss Chard, black, yellow, and striped radishes, heirloom beets, Belgian endive, deep red radicchio, purple Brussels sprouts, turnips, peas for Spring, garlic, dill, and cilantro.

I may have throbbing muscles, blisters, cuts and scratches, but it is worth every ache. Especially when there are still a few evidences of summer bounty to remind me that beautiful things will emerge from the dark soil.

Until then I will continue to plant and dream and feast on the last of the sweet cherry tomatoes, mini-capsicums, cucumbers, and pumpkins.

This morning I took a break from gardening to wood-burn a lovely new box that Bear made for me to carry my medieval supplies. Our medieval camping season starts soon and we are so excited. Early mornings with hands wrapped around steaming cups of coffee, nights spent around the campfire talking for hours and drinking homemade spiced wine and mead. So we’re busy sewing and wood-working, getting our garb and equipment ready for fun, memorable times with good friends.

Now it’s time to have some lunch and get back outside to plant some olive trees.

For lunches this week I’ve been making all sorts of dishes featuring seasonal veg such as these lovely yellow string beans. After a quick steam, I saute them with double-smoked ham, caramelized onions, and crispy bits of garlic. Served with a bowl of French Onion Soup, they made a hearty and satisfying meal.

What is your favorite thing to make with string beans? xo

Yellow Beans with Ham, Garlic, and Onions


olive oil
1 onion, halved and thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, halve and thinly sliced
1 cup double-smoked ham, chopped
3 handfuls of yellow beans, tailed and snapped in half
salt and ground pepper


1. Steam yellow beans until crisp tender. Drain and set aside to dry.
2. In large saucepan heat olive oil over medium heat.
3. Add onion and garlic. Saute until soft.
4. Add ham and saute until ham begins to brown.
5. Add yellow beans and more olive oil, if necessary. Heat through. Season with salt and pepper and serve hot.

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Preparing for Winter » Rambling Tart - […] Autumn is one of the busiest times on our farm as we bustle about getting everything ready for Winter. […]

Krista - Yeah, the aches and pains aren’t something I look forward to. 🙂 But I sure love the produce!

Krista - Oh yes, @GourmetGetaway:disqus That would’ve been the perfect accompaniment! Next time. 🙂

Krista - I sure did, paradis! 🙂

Tracy A. - Your yellow bean recipe sounds divine! I haven’t done any serious gardening in several years. I miss my own produce, but not the aches and pains!

Gourmet Getaways - Beans and ham look great, with hot white rice please hehe 🙂

Julie & Alesah
Gourmet Getaways xx

mlleparadis - oh you don’t have time for all the ways i love to eat fresh beans! enjoy!


Krista - It IS cold and windy here too, @OrgasmicChef:disqus, though not wet yet. I’ve got potatoes roasting with garlic for breakfast this morning. Brrr. 🙂

Krista - Thank you, @joanneeatswellwithothers:disqus 🙂 It was definitely a hit in our house. 🙂

Krista - It sure will be, Charlie. 🙂 And honestly, it makes me so happy whenever I step outside and see all those finished garden beds. 🙂

Maureen - So lovely, Krista. Not today though as if your place looks like mine, you’re cold, windy and wet! 🙂 I’d need a second plate of beans.

Joanne (eats well with others) - Love this yellow bean dish! So simple and yet full of flavor.

Hotly Spiced - The bean dish looks wonderful. That sure is a lot of gardening but it will be so worth it when everything is ready for harvest xx

Krista - They are quite lovely, @disqus_xRgkTDNCQJ:disqus , not much different in flavor than green ones. 🙂

Nancy - I don’t think I’ve ever eaten yellow beans! But your plate looks delicious and it sounds like a perfect combo with a bowl of French onion soup.

Krista - Thank you, @liz_posmyk:disqus They really were so very good. 🙂 I’m picking up more ham today so I can make them again!

Krista - Ohhh, I’m so glad I could bring sunshine to your English world today, @katyabroad:disqus 🙂 That makes me smile. 🙂

Liz Posmyk - Sounds delicious, Krista… I haven’t eaten yellow beans for years. My late MIL used to grow them.

katyabroad - Those yellow beans just ooze autumn sunshine! What a gorgeous plate – and how satisfying to have it come from your own farm 🙂 Just the kind of sunshiny happiness I need while housebound for a couple of days!

Krista - I’m amazed it’s already so cold there, @disqus_o9c9vkchcC:disqus! It’s nippy here in the mornings, but I’ve been working outside all afternoon in a sundress. I’m not complaining. 🙂 I hope you like the bean recipe, luv. It’s definitely a favorite here now. 🙂

Anna Johnston - NOM nom NOM! Want this in my belly now. It’s freezing here in the Berra, and my cravings for fresh but filling foods are in overdrive. I want this deliciousness in my belly! I dont think I have ever really made anything with string beans before, that’s kinda strange. Will def get some beans at the markets on the weekend and make your recipe. Mmmmm!

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