Apple Cider Prosciutto Green Beans

Apple Cider Prosciutto

Prep time:

15 minutes

Cook time:

75 minutes

Difficulty level:

Simple

Smoked green beans?  Yeah, so good.  This amazing green bean recipe got me super excited for the holidays.  The mix between the sweet hint of apple cider and the saltiness of the prosciutto had my taste buds doing back-flips.  Yes really, back-flips.

The cool thing about this recipe is that you can make them as smokey as you like on your Hasty Bake, if you have a dutch oven, just by removing and replacing the lid during the simmer time.  I used a cast-iron dutch oven because it works the best for me in a charcoal grill.  Its already black (so the smoke doesn’t discolor it) and it can take a beating.  In fact, I am obsessed with using cast-iron in the Hasty Bake for tons of recipes.   Also, the versatility of the Hasty Bake allows you to cook this dish as slow or as fast as you need to to time your dinner perfectly.  If your beans are cooking too fast, lower the firebox or put the dutch oven on the indirect side of your grill.

Tip:  don’t worry so much about the thermometer with this dish, cooking over a direct flame with the lid open will not be the same as smoking food for long periods of time.  My thermometer at one point said 150 degrees and another time said 300.  Cooking with cast-iron allows you to cook with the lid open for extended periods of time because of how well it retains heat!  Like cooking on a stove top!

I also used turkey stock for this recipe instead of plain ol’ chicken stock… why you say?  Well… if you are like me, you have turkey stock during the holidays from cooking turkeys, SO why not use your Thanksgiving turkey drippings and stock to make one heck of a green bean dish? Don’t get me wrong, chicken stock works well for this dish too!  Just thought it would be a fun twist on a traditional dish.

 

Ingredients

  • 3 tbls olive oil
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 3-4 tbls lemon juice
  • 1.5 lbs green beans (snapped in half)
  • 1 cup diced prosciutto ham
  • 1.5 cups apple cider
  • 32 oz turkey stock
  • 1/2 tbls whole peppercorns
  • 1 cup diced white onion
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes
  • dutch oven – preferably cast-iron
  • smoking wood, if preferred

Instructions

  1. Prepare your Hasty Bake with half of a firebox of charcoal and raise firebox to bake level. Once your grill grates are hot, place your cast-iron dutch oven over flame without heat deflector.
  2. While cast-iron is heating, dice onions and prosciutto. Drizzle olive oil in the bottom of the cast-iron dutch oven and allow to heat.
  3. Add peppercorns and allow to sizzle for about a minute to release the flavor, then add in onion, prosciutto, garlic, and 2-3 tbls of the lemon juice. Stir periodically to allow prosciutto to cook thoroughly and crisp up.
  4. Once onions are caramelized and ham has started to crisp, add in the apple cider and scrape the bottom of the dutch oven with a wood spoon to get all of the flavor from the prosciutto brought into the liquid. Let apple cider simmer for about 7-10 minutes until reduced to almost half and then add halved green beans, about 24-28 oz of turkey stock )just enough for the liquid to come up to the top of the beans and chili flakes. Close grill lid and leave dutch oven lid off.
  5. After these steps, now would be a good time to grab a cocktail or add one or two fist size pieces of smoking wood to your charcoal. I didn’t use any because my grill is pretty well seasoned so the smoke of the hardwood charcoal was enough for my taste. Pecan or sugar maple would be good options if you need more smoke flavor, but you don’t need much! As liquid reduces, add 1-2 more tbls of lemon juice and turkey stock 2-3 oz at a time. You just don’t want your beans to be simmering with no liquid! Salt and pepper to taste after they have simmered for at least 30 minutes. The ham and the stock will provide some natural saltiness so give the stock time to marry with the beans so you don’t over-salt! You will simmer these puppies until they are nice and tender and have absorbed a lot of the stock. You will see stock left over, so just use a slotted spoon and serve! You can top with crispy onion strings or perhaps some slivered almonds to really make your dish pop.
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