Sautéed Green Beans, Mushrooms, & Almonds

For me, more so than other parts of meals I plan, a variety in vegetables is difficult to achieve on a regular basis.  I feel like I get stuck in a veggie rut and serve the same things again and again.  While consistency is good and offers your family stability in choices, it can make cooking less exciting and more challenging. 

The following recipe is a quick, easy, fresh, and delicious vegetable side.  This is especially good now that fresh vegetables will be in abundance for the upcoming months.  This recipe highlights the bright green color and the delicious crunch of the beans.  Yum!  Like all of the other veggie recipes I've posted, you may need to experiment with the combinations you like best.

1-2 cups fresh green beans, washed and snipped at ends
1-2 cups fresh mushrooms, rinsed and sliced
1/4-1/2 cup crushed or slivered almonds
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
olive oil (small amount--the mushrooms contain enough moisture that you don't need much)
salt and pepper to taste

Kitchen Supplies:
Optional: Misto olive oil spray bottle
pan with lid to sauté (I use a high-sided pot so when stirring, nothing falls out)
wooden spoon to stir

Heat the oil in pan/ pot on medium high heat.  Stir in green beans and mushrooms.  Stir and cover.  Allow to release water before removing cover and adding other ingredients.  Stir and determine how well done you'd like the beans.  (I like to keep mine a little firmer/ rawish. You may want to taste test before removing from heat.)  After a few minutes, when they've attained your desired level of done, remove from heat and serve.

This is a simple and tasty way to switch your veggie game up this week.  Happy sautéing!

Health Benefits:

Mushrooms: supply immune system support, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits, cardiovascular and anti-cancer benefits  
***Warning: mushrooms can interact with some medications; check with your health care provider, if you have any questions.

Garlic: Garlic has an outrageous number of possible health benefits and medicinal uses, as one website said, "Whole books have been written about garlic."  Check this link for a more inclusive list, but here are some: cardiovascular, anti-inflammatory benefits, prevents blockage of blood vessels, lowers blood pressure, antibacterial and antiviral benefits, contain anti-cancer properties, and can improve metabolism of iron
***Warning: check the top "Garlic" link for other interactions, but garlic may interfere with some medications, including conventional birth control pills; check with your health care provider, if you have any questions.

Green Beans (or String Beans): contain a large supply of antioxidants (including the carotenoids and flavonoids: quercetin, kaemferol, catechins, epicatechins, procyanidins, lutein, beta-carotene, violaxanthin, and neoxanthin) and therefore anti-inflammatory benefits, silicon which helps with bone health and development of connective tissues, vitamin K, manganese, vitamin C, and fiber, as well as possible cardiovascular benefits

Almonds: Provide biotin, vitamin E, manganese, copper, vitamin B2, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium (important for heart and cardiovascular health); lowers LCL-cholesterol levels and reduces risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes; antioxidant benefits (from high vitamin E levels); may help people lose weight and eat a healthier diet; helps to prevent gallstones