Meatless Monday: Raw Green Bean Salad with Slow Roasted Tomatoes and Feta


Even as a child (because I was  weird one!) green beans were one of my favorite vegetables! Granted, those green beans also often accompanied a frozen package of corn, peas, and oddly square-shaped carrots.

Last growing season I accidentally planted a couple bush bean plants instead of the pole beans I really wanted to grow. We didn’t have much of a harvest. This year, I planted some pole beans and anticipated a poor grow-season. However, we’ve been bombarded with a frequently consistent crop of green beans.

This salad is easy to throw together, flavorful and tastes great as a side dish or main dish.


Raw Green Bean Salad with Slow Roasted Tomatoes and Feta


For the tomatoes:
1 pound Roma tomatoes, cut into rounds 1/4-inch thick
1/2 pound grape tomatoes, cut in half
good quality olive oil for drizzling, about 1/4 cup
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

For the salad:
2 cups fresh green beans, cleaned* and cut into 1 1/2″ pieces
zest from one lemon
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced fine
1/4 cup crumbled feta
salt and pepper, to taste

  • To clean the beans, simply wash them and snap off the ends, removing the tough string if one is present.



Prepare the tomatoes:  Preheat oven to 225 degrees F. Arrange 2 oven racks to the middle and bottom positions of your oven. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Arrange the tomatoes, cut side up, on the baking sheets. Drizzle tomatoes with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 3 hours, until tomatoes are soft and shriveled. Rotate the sheets among the racks every 45 minutes or so, to cook the tomatoes evenly. Cool tomatoes until they’re comfortable to handle.

Prepare the dressing: In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the lemon zest, juice, olive oil, vinegar and minced garlic until completely combined.

Prepare the salad: In a large bowl, combine the cut beans, roasted tomatoes (as many of them as you want; the rest can be stored in a small glass jar filled with olive oil) and feta. Pour the oil and vinegar mixture over the beans along with some salt and pepper, then gently toss until everything is well coated. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes, up to a few hours, before serving.


Day to Day Life: Week Thirty-Seven

The last week:

The final supermoon of 2014, the Harvest Moon, made a lovely appearance this week.


One little Chicken trying to eat one giant cornflake.


We drove up to Portland to pick up my husband’s dad and stepmom… and the same cornflake eating Chicken came along for the car ride and hotel-stay. (Oh-em-gee I am the crazy bird lady at the ripe ‘ole age of 29!)


On the night we arrived in town, we had Mexican food.. including the strongest dang margaritas EVER. Mine had a little tinge of green, my husband’s? Almost clear, indicating a drink almost entirely made of tequila.


When we picked up my in-laws, we trekked into downtown Portland because they hadn’t ever been there. Of course Voodoo Doughnuts was a necessary stop. We opted for the voodoo dozen.


We also decided to explore the food trucks along 10th and Alder for lunch. I share my Khao Man Gai with Pops and Mimi. (DELICIOUS!)


My husband got an order of Kargi Gogo’s Khachapuri — a Georgian cheese bread, which was also very tasty!


Vincent (AHS water polo varsity goalie) had a water polo scrimmage this week. Both the boys and girls teams won by quite a large number of points!


Although I generally don’t buy green grapes because they tend to be more tart than sweet, these locally grown green grapes were superb!


Oregon albacore! 


We went wine tasting with Mimi and Pops one afternoon (or late morning, if we need to get technical).





Afterwards we had a late lunch… I love the jerk chicken sandwich at Jasper’s.


Craig’s dad brought me some flowers from the Ashland farmer’s market one morning.


Pizza night! My father-in-law tried this BBQ Chik’n pizza and said he really didn’t know it wasn’t chicken. He ate a few more slices the next day, too.


Yep, crazy bird lady. Hi, stairs Chicken.


Silas had an evening football game under the stadium lights last night.


Whole wheat peach galettes for a late morning breakfast today!



Saturday Sites: Week Thirty-Seven

First of all, my apologies for the lack of any recipes this week. We’ve had a whirlwind week of kids, then running up to Portland to pick up my father-in-law and his wife, bringing them back to Ashland with us, then spending much of our time enjoying their visit. That said, I thought I’d at least share these links and tomorrow, some photos, for this week. Here are some of my favorite places around the inter-webs this week:

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  1. I don’t typically like to dwell on thoughts like this, wherein I wonder what I would’ve done differently at XX year of my life. However… if you could go back and re-live being 18, what would you have done different?

  2. The summer I turned 21, I almost died from bacterial spinal meningitis. I was in the hospital for nearly two weeks, much of that time in the ICU. If I had hospital meals like some of these, that would have been a HUGE step up from my weird combinations of dry chicken, rice, flavorless broth, over-steamed vegetables, jello, flavorless tea and black coffee, and other shenanigans.

  3. Although rum tends to get me in more trouble than any other kind of liquor, these popsicles sound delicious!

  4. I’m not a huge fan of the ALS bucket challenge floating around the internet, let’s be real. I fully support making donations as you feel inclined and don’t think some public display of dumping ice water over your head has any real selfless purpose. These folks… perhaps they should have shied away from the ice bucket challenge.

  5. This man has been one of my favorite musicians over the last decade. New album release, woohoo!

  6. One of my favorite flavors of potato chips, turned into crispy little chickpeas. Recipe bookmarked.

  7. If I had daughters, or a daughter, I would share most of these things with her.

  8. Hah! I love that I can text our kids and they all fully appreciate some dry, inappropriate, sarcastic humor.

  9. I do wish that my parents could text… I think it’d be highly entertaining much of the time!

  10. Alrighty, this made me laugh.

  11. Oh-em-gee. WHY is this a thing?!

  12. Hey YOU, yeah YOU, I want to know what’s on YOUR nectar list!

  13. The differences in what’s available to you for $1500/month rent in different states is crazy.

  14. Let’s make … let’s  eatlet’s make and eat this bread, it sounds tasty!

  15. Hahahaha… WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?! I want to meet Doo Doo Dan.

  16. I’d also like these pants, please.

  17. We could also make this bread, but I might eat it all.

  18. These homemade lunches are inspiring. I’ll be honest. We just finished the second week of school and I am totally OVER the idea of packing kid lunches. Don’t tell.

  19. I would like some of this, maybe now, okay?

  20. Let’s have these Mexican corn croquettes in our future.

Day to Day Life: Week Thirty-Six

The last week, looking something like this:

Homemade veggie burgers one night. With a non-homemade side of tots.

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School started this week for the kids (woo hoo!). The complicated recess politics around 4th grade two-square are mind-boggling.

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The view from my crouched down, weed-pulling stance in the garden.

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Also, this view…

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Taco night is always a popular dinner theme around here.

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And this time of year, it totally requires fresh sweet corn salsa!

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Can you find my husband amidst this game Silas came up with at Nana’s house?

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Silas and Nana play of game of “army guys.” complete with multiplication problems in order to move any guys on the table. Guess which one of them came up with using math as a game… (Hint: it wasn’t the 9 year old.)

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These two! The steal my just-picked vegetables when I’m not looking!

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Fresh Oregon albacore is in season and I couldn’t be more stoked! I made this tuna salad for dinner one night.

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Somebody celebrated their 16th birthday around here this week! He got a giant before-school hot chocolate with homemade vanilla whipped cream.

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And although I didn’t get a single photo of the birthday  meal for 9 of us, we had Vincent’s favorite Mexican dishes, including red and green cheese enchiladas, a few different homemade salsas, spanish rice, slow cooked pinto beans… and for dessert, a delicious strawberry cream cake plus the blueberry lavender ice cream V also requested nearly 3 months ago. Here are some photos from the birthday celebration:

Opening gifts with help from his two brothers…


Little Red Riding Hood made an appearance.


Grandma Gail was happy to meet Chicken, who willingly let her pick her up! (Generally she grunts and pecks at, then flies away from most folks who aren’t me, who are trying to pick her up!)


Cake for the boy. With candles and a sparkler.


Ice cream!

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Vincent and his mama.


Happy 16, Vincent Love!


Although I didn’t photograph any food other than the cake and ice cream, I did photograph the enormous bowl of leftovers I had the next night for dinner!

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Mr. Silas Henry had his first Pop Warner game today.

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They played one of the toughest teams in the league… and won 13-0!

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When you are totally burnt out on Mexican food, but the rest of your family is happy to have it again, it’s necessary to gather handfuls of basil from the garden, make some pesto, then cook some penne and toss the two together…

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Chicken says, “Dear Julie: thank you so very much for washing all the laundry, folding it so nicely, and not getting mad at me when I fly into the room and land on the clean sheets, blankets, towels, underwear, piles of teenage boy clothes, little boy clothes… I’m much obliged!”

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I hope you’ve had an excellent week! The upcoming one here is going to be crazy, but hopefully we see each other before next Sunday! : )

Saturday Sites: Week Thirty-Six


  1. Holy crap, I was feeling this at the beginning of the week, too!

  2. Nine months of video footage condensed into one Vine video… and it’s a beautiful one.

  3. Yummy, this strata from Deb at Smitten Kitchen sounds tasty!

  4. Hmmm… My twenties are almost over! How did that happen?

  5. I’d really like someone to make me these pancakes, please.

  6. This version of Sara Bareilles’ song, “Uncharted.

  7. Just yes, this. This is good.

  8. Every state’s most notable chain restaurant, in map form.

  9. Let’s all put more love into the world.

  10. Okay, I feel like I need to apologize for this being amongst this list… but I laughed so hard I teared up and couldn’t breathe. (P.S. I am obviously 2 years old.)

  11. This cake is intriguing to me.

  12. The response this mom had for a problem on her kid’s math homework is EXACTLY my feeling and thoughts when I tried helping Silas with math homework last year. Let’s see how this year goes…

  13. Hahaha, IT’S TRUE.

  14. I need a little Cards Against Humanity in my life.

  15. The truth is, I have been both shy and introverted my entire life thus far.

  16. This week, my back and shoulders have been killing me. I may even try these moves. Yoga ain’t my thang.

  17. These words are important and honest.

  18. This photo project, You Are My Wild is frickin’ beautiful and so very lovely (seriously).

  19. The ingredients in this oatmeal certainly have me curious!