Fresh Shell Beans


bingo shell beansMy big bean trial this year is doing pole beans for fresh and dry shelling.  I know that dried beans are incredibly cheap in the bulk bins, but it’s very difficult (impossible?) to get fresh shellers here.

The variety I’m growing on two 45′ trellises is an Italian Borlotto type from Territorial Seed Company.  While advertised as a light green pod streaked with red, only about half the pods show the red streaking.  The beans are big and creamy greenish-white when fresh with about 7-9 beans per pod.

I’ve tried growing shell beans before–several years ago I tried doing the Dragon Tongue bush beans, but they got simultaneously flooded and hailed out and were a complete loss.  I don’t grow bush beans anymore, which tends to limit my selection of varieties for shellers pretty dramatically, so this pole Borlotto seemed a great find.

This is my first harvest, and I’ve got a few recipes in mind, but because M is here with his finicky palate, I’ll settle (if you can call it settling) for some Italian sausages and beans in the crockpot with tomato sauce. He probably won’t eat the tomato sauce or the beans, but he will at least eat a sausage.

Then I can make him a few raw carrots for his veggie, and I’ll gorge on my fresh-picked shell beans!

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4 responses to this post.

  1. Good morning,

    I just read your report on the Borlotto type bean that you are growing. Just wanted to mention that the mottled coloring of the bean pod becomes more prominent as the bean matures and the pod starts drying out.

    Hope that your harvests continue to do well!

    Best regards,

    Josh @ Territorial Seed Company

  2. Posted by flyingtomato on August 10, 2009 at 2:38 pm

    Hey–thanks! I figured that was the case, as I noticed some of the most mature ones were getting some red speckles.

  3. I love fresh shell beans. I boil them ’til they’re done, and then toss with good olive oil and kosher salt. Divine.

  4. Posted by flyingtomato on August 11, 2009 at 11:18 am

    Yes! I think I will do some of these a la ful medames–with olive oil, garlic, hard-boiled egg, salt and pepper. You simply cannot get them at all around here, so I am excited to finally get to eat the ones I’ve grown–and I may sell a bag or two at the market as well.

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