Since green beans are popping up in the markets now (at least in So Calif) I thought I would pass along a hint from one of the farm stand girls. Last year she had some flatter green beans (not the really wide flat Italian ones) that she said her grandma used to grow when she was younger. She suggested just boiling them quickly for 5 or less minutes without any prep- no popping off the end where they attach to the vine or anything. Then she said the kids all dipped them in a mayo and soy mix as their fave afternoon treat. Well, I cooked them that way and did some fat free mayo and soy, as well as a mustard dip (mustard powder, balsamic, splenda and water, or just Dijon) They were good and I started doing all my green beans that way. So I just rinse them and cook quickly till tender/crisp. I eat with my fingers dipping in various dips and just discard the top or tail. They do not get as water logged because they are not "open" in the water and the ease of prep makes them a no brainer. If I am using them in another prep I just pull off the tops or tails after cooking and add to the dish. Seems really simple but it put green beans in my rotation for sure.