OK, it’s high time to spice up those hum drum green bean recipes and here’s one that doesn’t have a canned soup in it, is super easy and packs that Big, Bold flavor this cook loves.
Funny thing is I went to the market and found these amazing, and I mean amazing, bright purple, pink, spotted light purple, light green, dark green and deep yellow beans. They were exploding off the refrigerated shelf. I had to make something with them, and after reading an article Yotam Ottolenghi wrote in Bon Appetit, decided to try these Mixed Yellow and Green Beans with Peanuts, Ginger and Lime.
Surprisingly, after a quick blanch in hot, salted water they were quickly shocked in a ice cold water bath and to my dismay all the vibrant purples and pink colors that had initially attracted me to these beans was non existent.
What the heck happened?
Needless to say the colors that remained were several shades of different greens and yellows. All is good, they were still wonderful, but I was a little bummed at the lack of colors that could have made it to the plate. Sad face.
Anyways, these are pretty darn spectacular in flavor due to the Thai influenced seasoning mixture that coats these.
Were talking fresh ginger, shallots, lemongrass, garlic, lime zest, cilantro and pan roasted chopped peanuts! Sound good?
It did to me and while his original recipe included finely chopped kaffir lime leaves, I was not able to find any in some of my go-to markets for ingredients like that here in San Diego. In most markets you can now find chopped garlic, grated lemongrass and ginger all made for you in tubes or glass jars. I keep things like this on hand in my fridge in case fresh sometimes are sold out or you just don’t have the time to peel and grate on a microplane.
Needless to say the end result was a crunchy, citrus filled sauce that coated each and every bean, making each bit better than the last. I gotta say this is a fantastic side dish that I served with some rotisserie chicken.
I hope you give this a try and let me know what you think.
- 2 pounds mixed snap beans (purple, yellow, green, wax, haricots verts), trimmed
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 5 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 1 1-inch piece ginger, peeled, finely grated (1 tbsp ginger paste)
- 1 lemongrass stalk, tough outer layers removed, grated on a Microplane (2 tbsp lemongrass paste)
- 2 garlic cloves, finely grated
- Freshly ground black pepper
- ⅓ cup salted, roasted peanuts, chopped
- 1 tsp finely grated lime zest
- 3 tbsp fresh lime juice
- ¼ tsp sugar
- ⅓ cup (packed) cilantro leaves, plus more for serving
- Working in batches, cook beans in a large pot of boiling, salted water for 3 minutes. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a large bowl of ice water. Allow to cool, drain and pat dry.
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium and cook shallot, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the ginger paste, lemongrass paste, chopped garlic and cook, stirring, until very fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer to a large bowl and season with kosher salt and fresh black pepper.
- Heat another tablespoon of olive oil in same skillet over medium-high. Cook peanuts, tossing often, until golden brown for about 2 minutes. Transfer to paper towels, then coarsely chop. Set aside 1 tablespoon of the chopped peanuts for garnishing.
- Whisk lime zest, lime juice, sugar, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, and remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil into shallot mixture. Add the mixed, cooled beans, remaining peanuts, and chopped cilantro and toss to coat. Season with kosher salt and fresh black pepper if needed. Serve topped with more cilantro and reserved peanuts.
Adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s recipe in Bon Appetit