Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
I thought today it would be appropriate to share some green artwork and some green food. 🙂
Earlier this month, I did my third visit to the Kindergarten classes at PS 142 and read one of my favorite book that I have illustrated, called Green As A Bean. It is based on a wonderful poem, written in the 60s by the late Karla Kuskin. The poem was recast as a picture books and was published several years ago. Written in lyrical rhyme, the verse asks the reader to imagine what they might be like if they were green, soft, loud, fierce, bright…
I loved painting the illustrations because the story is so open-ended. It was such a pleasure to create the “world” of this book.
I read it to the children in class and spoke to them about “words that describe things” (i.e. adjectives). Then we narrowed it down to colors, since they have been studying color charts during their regular class time. I had them imagine if they were a particular color, what would they be?
It was a nice way to ease the kids into writing down their thoughts and illustrating them. Here are some of their creations.
Getting back to the color green…
It is sometimes difficult getting my son to eat enough green food. Today I made him some special green vanilla yogurt (with the help of food coloring, not scary spores!) and he gobbled it up. But I’m talking about real green food, namely green veggies.
One of the very few green vegetables he’s been eating since he started eating solids, though, are green beans. I think it’s because early on I developed a recipe he loved: Miso Green Beans. I use Trader Joe’s French green beans — they are so good and reasonably priced. (I just hope they don’t discontinue them, as they have a tendency to do with food I love!)I make a thin paste with miso and some water and season with a bit of sugar.
Then I drizzle this over cooked green beans and saute them until they are slightly browned and a bit caramelized.
They have a nice sweet and savory flavor. You can garnish with some toasted sesame seeds for added crunch. It also brings out the nutty sesame flavor of the sesame oil the beans are sauteed in.
Miso paste can be found in Asian food stores and health food stores. I also love to use it in salad dressing.
Miso Green Beans
3 cups of fresh or frozen French beans
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 ½ teaspoon miso paste
½ teaspoon sugar
- Steam green beans until crisp tender in steamer or microwave. Drain.
- Saute beans in oil until softened a little.
- Mix miso paste, sugar and about 1 teaspoon of water in a bowl. Add to beans and saute vigorously until beans are slightly carmelized.
- Serve immediately.