Like many people, I struggle to fit enough vegetables into my diet. It’s a bit easier during spring and summer because of my lifelong love of fresh green beans. Indeed, once as a wee lass growing up on the Goff Estate, I legit ate so many green beans that I couldn’t move.

Of course, I prefer green beans to be seasoned by copious slices of bacon aka one of the world’s most perfect foods. Last year, I legit covered beans with so many slices of bacon that the resulting meal raised my blood pressure.

When fresh green beans aren’t in season, canned and frozen green beans will do, and I also eat salads, but if I prepare my own, I tire of them after a couple days. I also tire of frozen broccoli and asparagus after a while. (Pro tip: Do not engage with canned asparagus.)

At the beginning of this year and/or the end of last year, I accidentally added more veggies to my diet. This story begins a couple years ago when I found a fancy holiday cookbook among my oldest sister’s books. I told her that cookbook looked like something I would enjoy perusing and I walked out of the house with it in my possession. She has a different interpretation of events that includes the word “stole.” Her accusation wounds me.

Anyway, a recipe for pork chops with roasted green beans and pecans from that cookbook intrigued me and I tried it at the beginning of this year and/or the end of last year. (Those days run together.) The pork chop was serviceable, but it wasn’t something I intended to try again.

But those roasted green beans and pecans were so tasty that I added them to my repertoire. It’s a simple recipe. You combine frozen beans and olive oil and then spread the beans on a jelly roll pan and bake at 450 degrees until they are tender and slightly browned. Then, you stir the pecans and some butter into the beans and bake until the pecans are golden.

I’ve modified the recipe to suit my busy life. I also alternate between green beans and broccoli. And I’m sure I eat enough pecans in that one serving to surpass my suggested daily caloric input. That’s surprising to me because I don’t even like pecans.

But roasting the nuts and the veggies together, with a little olive oil, improves the taste of both. As I am not a scientist or a foodie, I cannot explain this phenomenon. I can only eat it.

This post originally appeared in the Appalachian News-Express.