Roasted Beans and Tomatoes (Rachael Ray)

I was talking with one of the dads at my daughter’s school this past week.  We spur each other on when we cross paths at the gym, and we’re both newly committed to fitness and eating well.  While we waited for the dismissal bell, we passed the time comparing our latest vegetable obsessions, mine being brussels sprouts.  He focused on green beans, listing various impressive nutritional benefits, none of which I’ve managed to retain.  Nonetheless, this brief conversation reminded me how seldom I prepare this simple and inexpensive green veggie.

Whole green beans in a carton.

I have never attempted anything creative involving green beans, but then that should come as  no surprise to you, kind readers.  I have a long history of non-creative cooking.  In the past I’ve always purchased the frozen beans packaged in the ‘ready to steam’ bag.  Pretty ingenious and convenient in my mind, but not so tasty at the table.  Inspired by Peter’s comments, I did a quick search today and found this great recipe.  In my experience, Rachael Ray’s recipes are almost always delicious.  However, her ingredients tend to be many, and sometimes too exotic for my shopping schedule.  I was pleasantly surprised that this one was hers, and had high flavor expectations.  My boring beans are gone forever.  These lovelies have a wonderfully smoky taste, complimented by the surprisingly tangy carmelized tomatoes.  A scrumptious and super clean side.  I hope you try this one and let me know what you think!

1 pound green beans, washed and trimmed

1 pint cherry (or grape tomatoes)

Extra virgin olive oil (I used about 2 tbl)

Salt (I used 1/2 tsp)

Pepper (1/4 tsp)

Heat the oven to 450 degrees F with an empty baking sheet on an upper rack.

Coat beans and tomatoes with olive oil and season them with salt and pepper. Pour the beans and tomatoes on the hot baking sheet and roast 22 to 25 minutes until caramelized. Serve as a side.