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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Simply Elegant

I'm not much of a vegetable lover, but I do really enjoy haricots verts.  I like regular green beans as well, but the slim french green beans are really my favorite.  Maybe it's because they're french.

Back when I was a girl, back in the olden days of Los Angeles, we didn't have haricots verts.  We had green beans.  That was it.  There were no international green beans served in my house.  It wasn't until years after I moved out on my own, that I discovered that there actually existed different varieties of green beans than the ones served at our dinner table.  Who knew?  I certainly didn't.

But the fact remains that the french version are absolutely delicious.  They're sweet and if cooked properly, they're a vivid green with a delicate little snap when you bite into them.

The best way to prepare haricots verts is to briefly blanch them in lightly salted boiling water and then to immediately dunk them in a bowl of ice water.  This will stop the cooking and help the beans to maintain their bright green color.  At this point, you can then go ahead and use the beans in any recipe... or just snack on them as is.

This is my go-to recipe and it's a perfect little side dish.  It's filled with flavor; shallots and garlic have a way of doing that.  It'll add a touch of the fancy-schmancy to whatever you're serving for dinner.

Recipe:  Sautéed Haricots Verts


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced shallots
3 teaspoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
3/4 pound haricot verts, stemmed and blanched
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and sauté the garlic and the shallots until soft.  Add the parsley, and stir to coat.  Add the haricots certs, toss to coat with the herbs and oil and heat until hot, 2-3 minutes.  Season generously with the salt and pepper.

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