Tell me why…

…these are called French beans…

Fried French beans

I did try googling but it all came to naught.

I also don’t know why they are called or kui tao (turtle beans) in Hokkien for they certainly do not look like those. I was thinking that perhaps, the curved ends look like the flippers of those sea creatures but that’s just a wild guess.

I did find out, however, that the way I slice them so very thinly…

French cut

…is called French-cut. According to this guy in his blog, “French-cut is just a fancy term for julienne or thinly sliced.” but no, he did not cut the beans one by one – he used a food processor.

I am not all that fond of the smell/taste of these beans and I find that by cutting them this way and soaking it in water and rinsing it a few times, I would be able to get rid of the smell and like what I said in this post, if there are parts that aren’t suitable for consumption, I can just cut away that part and throw it away. That was in 2013 and I was still adding salt and msg in my cooking, not anymore.

This time around, I cooked it more or less the same way as how I cooked the sugar snap peas that day, except that I did not have to add water (nor the pinch of salt) as those thin slices would cook easily so there was no necessity for me to do that.  I would have added ikan bilis (dried anchovies) or prawns for the sweetness and flavour but I did not – instead, I added the leftover sambal belacan that I pounded to eat with the stewed pork leg that my missus cooked and that was more than enough for a really nice and appetising vegetable dish.

For our meat dish that day, I cooked this beef and potatoes soup…

Beef and potatoes soup 1

That was easy to cook – I just threw in the beef, cut into thin slices, with two whole Bombay onions, peeled, and simmered over low heat till all the juices had come out and then I threw in a handful of peppercorn, one kulit kayu manis (cinnamon stick), a few bunga lawang (star anise), bunga cengkih (cloves) and pelaga (cardamom) and added water and boiled it for hours till the meat was tender and then I added the potatoes and continued cooking till the tuber was cooked. I used the imported Australian red potatoes that day but no, it was not rich and creamy, probably good for curry only.

The soup was very sweet and absolutely delicious with the taste of the beef and the spices…

Beef and potatoes soup 2

No, no salt nor msg was added (and no oil was used in the cooking either) so it did get me wondering as to where the sweetness came from – perhaps it was from the onions. I did not have any daun sup (Chinese celery) in the fridge so I just garnished the dish with the spring onions from my garden, chopped, and served.