Sunday, August 5, 2012

Braised Greek Green Beans

For years we would travel to Detroit's Greektown to eat at The New Hellas Cafe, a restaurant owned and run by Gus Anton.  Gus took over the restaurant from his father in 1950 and was always there.  Flaming cheese, lamb chops, Greek antipasto platters, spanakopita, moussaka....Gus had it all.  Usually when we went, it was with a group of six or more and we would order our meal "family style".  A huge platter of lamb chops would arrive at our table along with side platters of potatoes, rice and vegetables.  The vegetables would vary...sometimes cabbage, sometimes okra....but always there were green beans which I loved!  And they were always stewed until very, very soft.
Gus closed his restaurant in 2008 and sadly, passed away last week at age 85.  He is truly missed.

Makes about 4 servings

2 Tbl olive oil
1 medium white onion, diced
2 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
5 cloves garlic, halved or cut in thirds if very large
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 Tbl fresh minced dill
A small pinch of cinnamon
1 pound green beans, washed, trimmed and cut in half if long
3/4 cup chicken broth

In a 4 quart pot heat the oil, add the onion and saute over medium heat until soft.  Stir in the tomatoes, salt, pepper, garlic dill and cinnamon.
Add the green beans and then pour in the chicken broth.  Bring up to a boil and then simmer slowly for at least an hour, partially covered.  Give everything a stir occasionally.  You want the beans to be soft and velvety and the garlic to be sweet.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

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