There’s nothing like fresh green beans.
Yet many are intimidated to tackle preparing fresh green bean recipes because they think they’re a lot of work.
Let’s be honest, you do need to do a little prep work in terms of snapping off the stalks. But that’s what family and friends are for. We’ve been known to engage a 3-year-old for the job!
Easy meets elegant.
Truly, fresh green bean recipes are some of the easiest dishes to prepare. Once washed and snapped, you have an elegant stalk that’s truly beautiful to look at.
The key is to avoid overcooking your beans.
For this recipe, we blanch the beans. This process flash cooks the beans and then shocks them in an ice bath.
This stops the cooking and retains the beautiful, bright bean color.
After the ice bath, you can dry your beans off with a paper towel and refrigerate them in an air-tight container for up to 3 days. This is a great strategy for preparing parts of your dish ahead when entertaining. You can also add these delicious beans to the tops of salads, like our Chicken Nicoise Salad.
But for this dish, you can finish it when ready to serve by sauteeing the cooked beans with the butter, shallots, and pre-toasted almonds.
Which brings us to our next make-ahead tip: Toast your almonds in advance as well. Store those, refrigerated, in an airtight container alongside your beans.
Then when you’re ready to serve up your dish, just warm sauté the ingredients and voila!
You and your guests will love the crisp crunch of the beans and earthy toasted almonds!
Equipment to make life easy.
We always like a spider tool when blanching vegetables. It makes transferring the hot vegetables to the ice bath easy, quick work. We like this one because it has a lot of drainage holes to allow water to pass through.
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|Prep Time||10 minutes|
|Cook Time||15 minutes|
- 1 pound green beans stem end trimmed
- 2 bulbs garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons shallot minced
- 1/4 cup slivered raw almonds
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, place raw almonds in a single layer. Toast for about 3 minutes until golden. Do not overcook or the nuts will be bitter. Nuts can also be toasted in a dry, sauté pan over medium heat for 3-5 minutes. Do not leave the pan as the nuts brown quickly.
- In a large stock-pot, fill 1/2 full with water. Bring water to a boil.
- Snap stem end off of green beans. For a nice presentation, cut stem end of green beans on the bias.
- In a large bowl, fill 3/4 full with water and add plenty of ice to create an ice bath.
- When water comes to a boil, add green beans. Blanch for 2 1/2 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- With a wire mesh spider or metal skimmer, remove the green beans, placing immediately in the ice bath. Do not remove from the ice bath until completely cool. This method shocks the beans, ensuring a beautiful bright green color and a crisp yet tender bean.
- Once the beans are completely cooled, remove from the ice bath and dry on paper towels or a clean kitchen towel.
- In a large sauté pan, over medium heat, melt butter.
- Add shallot and sauté for about 10 minutes until softened. Stir occasionally.
- Add garlic to the pan. Sauté for about a minute until fragrant.
- Add lemon juice. Stir to combine.
- Place green beans in the pan. Stir to heat evenly. Cook, stirring often for 3-4 minutes until green beans are warmed through. Add toasted almonds. Stir to combine. Adjust seasoning if desired. Serve immediately.
For an easy make-ahead side, blanch the green beans a day ahead. Dry on paper towels and store in the refrigerator.
Recipe courtesy of www.sisterspicekitchen.com ©2017 Sister Spice. All rights reserved.