I watch way too much of the Food Network channel on DSTV! Often sitting with my notepad and pen, hurriedly scribbling the recipe that often appears quite fleetingly, when you’re absorbed watching the actual preparation of a meal. My boys point to the remote control and laugh at me – “record it Mom” they say and I laugh along with them too…totally ignoring their advice, but chuckling to myself at how ” technologically lost” I often am! Again and again, the Barefoot Contessa appeals to my tastes in watching how she prepares simple gastronomic delights, in an unhurried manner, almost like she is engaging you in that conversation – my kind of celeb chef!
This recipe for green beans, with a difference, is one of hers. Green beans amandine or almondine, which is garden fresh green beans tossed with toasted almonds and a lemon-butter (ghee) sauce. It piqued my interest, and, my taste buds, as the only way I cook green beans is in a curry. Easy and quick to prepare, the fry roasted almonds bring a rich taste to the green beans, with added crunch, and served with a protein and salad, it is an excellent side dish option. Coconut oil may be used for a nutty tasting finish, instead of the rich taste of ghee.
I used extra fine green beans in this make, however, ordinary green beans will work just as well. I prefer the young green beans, based on a mind set that the actual bean in the pod, is a legume.
Green beans with a crispy, fresh crunch, tossed in a lemon butter sauce with roasted or toasted almonds – a deliciously different and refreshing spin on green beans, that is a winner in a side veggie or vegan meal option.
250g fine or extra-fine or green beans, top trimmed
½ – 1 tblsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 tblsp ghee or grassfed butter OR cold pressed coconut oil
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tblsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
Himalayan or Sea Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
¼ cup slivered almonds OR almond flakes
- Bring a medium sized pot of water to a rapid boil on the stove-top. Add in the green beans, and blanche for about 2 minutes – the beans should be bright green in colour and slightly tender to the touch.
- Strain off the green beans in a colander or sieve, and cool them under running water.
- Remove the beans onto absorbent kitchen paper / clean dishcloth and dab until dry.
- Heat the ghee OR grass-fed butter and the olive oil in a non-stick pan over medium-low heat until the ghee melts and the foam subsides. Add the almonds and cook, stirring occasionally, until they are golden-brown in colour.
- Using a slotted spoon, transfer the almonds to a plate. Reduce the heat to low and add the garlic to the pan. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, for about 30 seconds. Add in the beans, increase the heat to medium, and cook, tossing occasionally, until crisp-tender and lightly browned.
- Stir in the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Plate up the green beans, sprinkle with the browned almonds, and serve with a protein of your choice.