Tag Archives: green beans

Steamed Veggies with Horseradish Vinaigrette

29 Jun

A few weeks ago I received a bunch of green beans in my CSA box…  but not the regular green beans, the haricot vert French-kind green beans…  thinner and crisper than the regular ones.

As you may have read here already, I am not a bean fan.  But green beans are a completely different thing.  I grew up eating French-style green beans from a can.  It was one of the choices of ready-to-eat veggies we were given – green beans, canned corn or sliced tomatoes…  and they had to be the thin french ones, because the fat, stubby regular ones were not the same… you could see the little beans inside and that would be a no-no for me.

But evolving into fresh green beans is something much more recent… as I was explaining to a friend the other day, canned and fresh greens beans are two completely different things.  And after you’ve tried the fresh kind, you’ll never go back to canned, ever.

To me the easiest way to prepare them is steaming them…  and I top them with some sort of olive oil-based dressing.  This time around was with prepared horseradish.  Check it out…


 Steamed Veggies w- Horseradish Vin


About 4-5 baby red bliss potatoes, washed and cut in half
A small handful of haricots verts or french-style green beans, trimmed
The juice of 1 lemon
1 tbs of prepared horseradish
Salt and Pepper to taste
About 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil


  1. In a medium pot, I cook some potatoes in a little bit of salted water.  I boil/steam them over medium heat in the covered pot for about 15 minutes.
  2. Boiling potatoes
  3. When the potatoes are about to be done, I place the trimmed green beans on top of the potatoes, cover the pot again and let them steam  about 2-3 minutes.  After that,  I turn the stove off and leave them there for about 5 minutes more until the green color in the beans is super bright.  Super easy.   
  4. Steamed Green beans and Potatoes 1
  5. While the beans steam, prepare the dressing…
  6. In a measuring cup whisk together the lemon juice, horseradish, olive oil, salt and pepper.   Drizzle over veggie and enjoy.

     Horseradish Vinnaigrette 1               Horseradish Vinnaigrette 2

Watch out…  make sure the horseradish you use does not contain egg or egg yolks in it.  I bought mine at Whole Foods and as you can see by the labeling, it does not contain any egg.  Just be careful if you’re traveling with it, because airport security might consider it a liquid and might take it away.  I was LUCKY I got a nice security person and let it slide…

           Gold's Horseradish                 Gold's Horseradish - BACK

Salade des Haricots Verts

13 May

Last week, the Serious Eats site released the challenge of making a great weekend meal by cleaning out your pantry.  I was so inspired by the idea I made two… well, it was really a whole meal composed of the main course, Spinach Puffed Empanadas, and this side salad with French green beans and lettuce, directly from by CSA basket.

  Salade Haricots Verts


a handful of French green beans or haricots verts, trimmed of the stem end
5-6 leaves of lettuce, I used a local “del país” lettuce, but any buttery lettuce will do
½ tomato, chopped
½ cucumber, peeled if it’s not organic and chopped
The juice of ½ a lemon
Extra-virgin olive oil                                                                                                                    
Salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a small to medium covered sauce pan, bring about ½ inch of water to a boil.  Salt the water with about ½ tsp of salt and place the green beans.  Cover the saucepan again and wait about 1 minute.  Turn the heat off and let the green beans steam for about 4-5 minutes.
  2. Mix together in a salad bowl the lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and cooked green beans.  Pour over it the lemon juice and olive oil. Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste and toss to combine.


 Spinach Empanada 5

Serve alongside a Spinach Puffed Empanada or the main course of your choice…

Comme Çi Comme Ça Salade Niçoise

2 Apr

To celebrate my French classmates and to practice the French we learn at l’Alliance Française, I decided to host a French dinner  get-together – French food while speaking only in French…  Parlez-vous français, anyone???  Hey, one of my friends even showed up with her books to look up any word she might forget…  she’s hilarious.I decided to try a few adaptations from the cooking book and TV special that inspired me to take-up French again – Barefoot in Paris from Ina Garten.  I decided my menu would be Comme Çi Comme Ça Salade Niçoise and Croque Monsieur sandwiches.

Comme Çi Comme Ça means in English “more or less” or “so so” – this salad is a karma-free version of the original, which typically includes tuna and eggs.  The sandwich is also an adaptation, using a soy-protein smoked ham in place of the traditional real ham.  I must say that none of my guests were vegetarian and they could not believe the deliciousness of the dinner.

I’m telling you… They were both magnifique!!! 



This salad is a composed salad with lots of ingredients.  It might seem like a lot, but if you take it little by little it will not seem as daunting as the ingredients list might suggest.  Please believe me, it’s simple.

1 recipe for French Potato Salad, recipe follows
Roasted button mushrooms, recipe follows
Marinated roasted red bell peppers, recipe follows
Sautéed green beans, recipe follows
1 head of Romaine lettuce
2 handfuls of grape tomatoes
1 large carrot, peeled and sliced thin
½ English cucumber, sliced thin
2 radishes, washed and sliced thin
Handful of olives – niçoise are best, but I also used lemon-stuffed manzanillas
Nicoise Vinnaigrette Dressing, recipe follows
  1. Arrange the lettuce, potato salad, sautéed green beans, roasted mushrooms, marinated bell peppers, grape tomatoes, carrot, cucumber, radishes and olives on a large flat platter.

For the French Potato Salad:

10 baby red-skinned potatoes, washed and quartered
4 tbs vegetable stock
3 tbs white wine vinegar
½ tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp kosher salt
A few grinds of freshly ground pepper
10 tbs extra virgin olive oil
1 stalk of green onion, sliced at an angle
4-5 leaves of basil, julienned
  1. Boil the potatoes in a medium pot in salted water.  Cook for about 20 minutes, until they are just cooked through.
  2. While the potatoes boil, prepare the dressing in a medium sized bowl that can accommodate the potatoes comfortably.  Whisk together the vegetable stock, vinegar, mustard, salt, pepper.  While whisking, add the olive oil to create an emulsion. 
  3. Drain the potatoes well and add to the bowl with the dressing.  Add the chopped green onion and basil.  Toss well to combine.  Cover bowl with a plastic wrap and let all the dressing to be soaked into the potatoes.
  4. Set aside until you get ready the rest of the salad ingredients.

Marinated Roasted Peppers

4-5 jarred roasted Piquillo peppers
Splash of extra virgin olive oil
Splash of balsamic vinegar
1 tbs capers
¼ tsp grated garlic
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and let the peppers marinate while the rest of the salad ingredients are ready.

Sautéed Green beans

½ bag of frozen green beans – I really prefer fresh, but I found non at the market so this is a cool substitute
1 shallot sliced thinly
1 clove of garlic, finely minced or grated
A dash of olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
  1. Fill a medium saucepan with salted water and bring to a boil.  Pour in the frozen green beans and cook for about 3-4 minutes. 
  2. In a medium skillet, heat olive oil and sauté the shallot and the garlic lightly.  Add the drain green beans and sauté with the shallots and garlic.  Season with Salt and Pepper to taste.

Roasted Button Mushrooms

1 pint of white button mushrooms, cleaned with a damp paper towel
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Cut the mushrooms in half.  Place in a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper to taste.  Toss to coat.
  3. Roast in oven (I do this in my toaster oven) for about 20 minutes until mushrooms are cooked and golden brown.

Niçoise Vinaigrette Dressing

1 tbs white wine vinegar
2 cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped
2 tbs fresh lemon juice
3 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 scallion, cut in big pieces
4 olives, pitted
1 tsp capers
A squirt of Dijon mustard
½ tsp salt
½ tsp freshly ground pepper
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  1. Combine all ingredients except oil in a blender.
  2. With blender running, slowly add oil until completely incorporated and emulsified.
  3. Serve in a dressing pitcher on the side of the salad.


This salad was so delicious, that my friend’s husband could not stop eating it.  This whole platter served only 4 people.  Accompanied by the Croque Monsieur sandwiches and my friend’s Aniette’s Bull… this was a complete meal.

Bon Appétit!!!

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