Garden Green Bean Salad

Garden Green Bean SaladHow’ve You Bean?
The recent warm weather means that my garden is starting to produce. So far I have picked some sweet snap peas and a few juicy strawberries…and the herbs are going crazy. The biggest crop we’ve had so far though is the green beans.

I love fresh green beans. My daughter eats them raw, which I will do as well when they are fresh off of the vine. They are crunchy and sweet and taste very much like summer. Usually, I just steam or blanch my green beans and eat them with a little butter and occasionally a little garlic. But, with so many beans coming in I have been looking for something else to do with them.

The obvious choice would be to pickle them. Pickled green beans are fantastic straight from the jar. And, they are even better in a Sunday morning brunch Bloody Mary. Alas, pickling takes time that I do not have at the moment. So, whatever I decide to do with my bans has got to be a little faster than canning.

My search has unearthed a number of green bean salad recipes that are great for the warmer weather and pair well with grilled fish and chicken. They are also a nice change from the usual picnic potato salad.

Last night we had this Garden Green Bean Salad with some pan-fried rainbow trout. It was perfect!

Garden Green Bean Salad
Yields 4 to 6 servings

1/2 cup chopped pecans
1-1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed
4 Tablespoons shallots, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
Juice from 1/2 a lemon, or more to taste
1 teaspoon fresh dill or chopped thyme
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard, optional
1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Preheat oven to 350º F.

Place the pecans on a baking pan and toast them in the oven for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Set aside.

Place green beans in a large saucepan and add enough water to come about halfway up the green beans. Bring to boiling and cook for 5 minutes, or until green beans are crisp-tender. Drain beans and place in a large bowl. Add the toasted pecans and minced shallots to the bowl.

In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, dill, salt, and pepper. Drizzle the olive oil mixture over the green beans and toss to coat.

Serve immediately at room temperature, or refrigerate up to a day and serve chilled.

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