A South African roast dinner just wouldn’t be complete without these delicious mashed green beans, or boere boontjies.
Literally translated as farmer’s beans, boere boontjies is pronounced boo-ra bwoyn-keys.
The way of life of the early Dutch settlers in South Africa was farming, and hearty, starchy food was a way of keeping them well-nourished during their working day. Luckily this way of cooking beans has survived the test of time and boere boontjies remain a favourite way of preparing green beans.
To be honest, it is a similar concept to the traditional English Bubble and Squeak – except it’s not fried after being mashed.
Mashed green means – made with only three main ingredients
This simple vegetable dish is made with only three main ingredients. Green beans, potatoes and onions, boiled together and then mashed up with lashings of butter and freshly ground black pepper. Serve these beans as a side dish with any roast meat.
Ingredients for Boere boontjies
It is also a great way of getting your children to eat their greens. When my children were younger they turned their noses up at anything resembling healthy vegetables. But they were more than happy to wolf down huge helpings of boere boontjies.
You can also adapt this recipe by substituting an equal quantity of washed, chopped spinach for the beans. It is equally delicious. (Add extra pepper to this one – the spinach loves it)
Boere boontjies (mashed green beans)
- 500 g green beans cut into 1 cm lengths
- 2 medium potatoes
- 1 large onion
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 knob butter
- Ground black pepper to taste
- Wash the beans, snip the ends off and then cut them into 1cm pieces
- Put the beans into a bot of cold water with the salt
- Peel and quarter the potatoes
- Peel the onions and chop them coarsely
- Add potatoes and onions to the beans and bring to the boil
- Boil for 10 – 15 minutes until the vegetables are soft enough to mash
- Add butter and plenty of ground black pepper. I think they benefit from quite a lot of pepper, but it is a personal taste
- Mash, serve and enjoy
You might like to try these other veggie recipes: