Cut onions in slices and boil them for a few minutes in salted water. Add string beans or pole beans--as fresh and young as possible. Cut the larger beans in two but leave the smaller ones whole. Cook briskly for 10-15 minutes, letting most of the water boil away. Add flour, butter, cream or sour cream, fresh basil, and freshly ground black pepper. Turn heat low and stir until the sauce is thick. Very special. (An acceptable substitute may be made with frozen whole beans and dried basil.)
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