By Bob Lipinski

As the weather cools, I like to cook beans, any type, for that soothing, comfort feeling inside. I like green beans because they are easy to cook, remain green, are crunchy and very versatile. Below is one of my favorite easy-to-make green bean dishes.

1 pound green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/2 pound pancetta, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 cloves garlic, sliced thin

1 small red bell pepper, sliced thin into long strips, then cut in half

1 tablespoon butter

Salt and black pepper to taste

Steam the beans for about 4 minutes or until “al dente.” Meanwhile, heat vegetable oil and sauté the pancetta until crisp, remove from pan and wipe clean. Heat olive oil and sauté garlic for 2 minutes, then add the red pepper and cook another 2 minutes. Add the beans, pancetta, and butter, then mix well and adjust seasonings. Serve immediately.

Bob’s Wine Recommendations:

Reds: A young Chianti (not necessarily Classico); Merlot; Pinot Noir

Whites: Côtes du Rhône (France); Gavi (Piedmont, Italy); Sauvignon Blanc

Bob Lipinski is the author of 10 books, including “101: Everything You Need To Know About Whiskey” and “Italian Wine & Cheese Made Simple” (available on He conducts training seminars on Wine, Spirits, and Food and is available for speaking engagements. He can be reached at OR


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