One reason I like this month's cookbook club pick is because of the many and varied recipes for vegetables. A number of vegetables have entire sections devoted to them which include information on the origin and season of the vegetable, selection, nutrition, a basic how-to-cook, and tricks particular to the vegetable. I love that sort of thing. I really do want to know how to glaze shallots, tricks for peeling carrots, and why the ancient Egyptians and Greeks loved fennel. That's good stuff!
So, when I wanted a fresh, vegetable side dish I turned to this book and found Green Beans in Vinaigrette. This recipe is as simple as the title suggests, and it's just bursting with freshness. I served the beans as an accompaniment for dinner one night and sandwiches the next day for lunch. Again, this is very simple but also very satisfying. This recipe makes a lot so either half it, plan on having a crowd over, or take it along on a picnic to share.
Green Beans in Vinaigrette
3 1/4 lbs fresh green beans, trimmed
2 Tbsp white-wine vinegar
6 Tbsp sunflower oil (extra virgin olive oil can be substituted)
1 Tbsp chopped shallot
1 tsp chopped fresh parsley
2 large firm tomatoes, sliced
Fresh green beans are so lovely.
If the beans are large, cut them into smaller pieces. Bring a large pan of salted water to a boil. Add the beans, bring back to boil, and cook, uncovered for 10 - 12 minutes, until tender, then refresh in cold water.
Drain immediately and pat dry.
Make a vinaigrette by combining the vinegar, oil, and salt and whisking vigorously.
Put the beans in a serving dish and sprinkle with the chopped shallot and parsley. Pour the vinaigrette over the beans and toss to mix. Lightly season the tomato slices and use to garnish the beans.
I made a couple of slight modifications, per usual. I was out of white-wine vinegar so I substituted champagne vinegar, which was lovely. I also decided to chop the tomatoes and add them to the green beans so they were more incorporated. Delicious.