French Green Beans

French Green Beans, also known as Haricot Verts (pronounced: Aar ee koh vair’).

These are extra special beans– thinner, sweeter, and much more tender than “regular” green beans.

They cook very quickly.

Though I often don’t blanch beans before cooking, with Haricot Verts for some reason it seems easier to do so in order to more carefully regulate cook time. I’d advise boiling no more than about 20-30 seconds per 1/2 lb.

After boiling, drain and dip into ice water IMMEDIATELY to stop them from cooking any more. Once cooled, drain again. Note: don’t forget to have your ice water ready in advance!

I believe Haricot Verts are best when enjoyed very simply.

Try this: saute 1 minced/pressed small clove garlic in 1-2 Tbsp. butter and/or olive oil, then add your blanched beans to the hot pan just long enough to re-warm, tossing often (about 30–45 seconds). Take a bite to make sure it’s doneness is to your liking– you can always cook a wee bit longer, but you can’t undo.

Season with salt and pepper. Of course, you can skip the garlic, and just toss beans with warmed butter in a saute pan.

If you can’t help yourself and want to get fancy, scatter with a few toasted almonds, a squeeze of lemon, and/or a pinch of red pepper flakes.

Voile! So easy and so elegantly French!

Recipe created or adapted by Liz Talley, Urban Graze

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