I gather that the name, snap beans, refers to the beans being snapped into bite size pieces before cooking. Another name for these beans is string beans referring to the "string" running from top to bottom and is pulled before cooking. A third name for the common snap beans is 'Haricot Verts'. Huh? I believe its French. The name for the snap beans that we use is "Contender." It's a true and tried cultivar in our family.
Once upon a time when we had our first garden, there was a church supper and I decided to bring snap beans as my covered dish. I know I rinsed the beans and snapped them, put them in a pot of salted water and let them come to a boil. After a few minutes, I removed them from the stove and put them in a serving bowl. It was fine until a lady at the church demanded to know who the heck had brought those beans. They were more raw than cooked.
Nowadays I let the beans with the ends off cook for no longer than five minutes and then I rinse them off under running cool water to stop the cooking.. Some say that the beans should be immersed in ice water. To make my dish, I pour a little canola oil in a frying pan and when hot stir in the drained beans with a little bit of Hoisin sauce. The beans need no further cooking and may be served warm with the rest of the meal.
The beans are also very good when cooked until tender in salted water. I don't think that I am the right person to tell you how long you should cook your beans.
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