Funeral Green Beans

A few years ago, my brother-in-law lost his father.  His family is Armenian.  The funeral was at one of the most amazingly beautiful churches I’ve ever seen – including St. Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow.  What does this have to do with green beans?  Lots.

They also had the funeral dinner right after the service in the aforementioned church.  The food was delicious!  They served green beans that my mom and I couldn’t quit eating.  I was desperate to recreate that recipe.  While this isn’t exactly what they served us that day (and I haven’t been able to figure out what’s different), it’s close and equally delicious. Did I mention they’re easy?

This is a recipe that can quickly be scaled up for large groups (or holidays).  I am going to include my “one meal” recipe that I make for my family.  We’re having 11 people total for Easter dinner tomorrow so I tripled the recipe.  The only thing harder is that you need a bigger pan.


1 small cooking onion (I use yellow because that’s what I buy.  Make sure it’s a cooking onion and not a sweet onion)

1 or 2 cloves of garlic (more depending on your taste and the strength of the garlic)

2 cans green beans (any style), drained

1 can tomatoes (I prefer petite decided because it’s easier to eat)


Peel the onion.  Cut in half and slice it thinly from the north to the south pole.  Think onion petals, not half-rings.  Separate the layers slightly and put in the bottom of a 3-quart sauce pan.  Next clean the garlic and slice thinly.  Throw in the pan on top of the garlic.  This is seriously the hardest part of the whole thing.



Next, the green beans go in the pan then the tomatoes with the liquid on top.  Salt and pepper to taste.


Bring to a boil and simmer slowly for approximately 20 minutes.  Don’t stir for at least the first 15.  You want the onions and garlic to cook and get soft.  When you stir, do it gently so the beans don’t break up.



I like these the first day but they’re great warmed over.  For tomorrow’s dinner, I simmered the mixture nearly an hour.  I’ll throw them in the crock pot (liquid and all) tomorrow morning on low and they’ll be ready just in time for dinner.

I frequently make a large batch and eat them for a few meals.  Brown some hamburger, mix it in, and you have a flavorful low-calorie meal.  You can also serve over rice.  I think the tomato juice mixed with the rice is delightful.



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