Sesame Green Beans

Lately, I've really been into the recipes from the blog For the Love of Cooking. They're for the most part simple, straight forward, healthy and satisfying meals. I try a lot of recipes off of blogs, and from home cooks in general, because that's what I enjoy supporting. We made these sesame green beans the week before last, and then again last week. I love green beans--roasted, steamed, sauteed, you name it. These are addictive!

A few notes: The recipe calls for 1 lb of green beans for the amount of sauce. I had so much sauce left over. I mean, enough to coat two servings of rice and vegetables a few days later. So, if I were you, I'd make all the sauce, but reserve half of it for another meal. Or, if you're not into that, just cut the sauce recipe in half. Also, I choose to use haricot verts. Not just because they're French (ha... ha). They're thinner which means less cook time, longer which means more fun to eat, and they have a more complex flavor that I love. If you can't find haricot verts, any variety of green bean will do--look for ones that are as young and thin as possible, or just increase your cook time. I would not use canned green beans for this... The original recipe also calls for boiling them. I choose not to boil my vegetables. Also, sesame oil is expensive, but I think it's vital to this recipe - every ingredient usually is with an ingredient list this short. It's only expensive in American supermarkets--turn to your local Asian supermarket. I can buy about 8 ounces of sesame oil at QFC for $7-$12, or I can buy 56 ounces of sesame oil at H Mart for $19.99 :)

Sesame Green Beans

1 lb of green beans
2 tsp rice vinegar
2 1/2 tsp soy sauce (or to your liking)
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1-2 cloves freshly minced garlic (or to your liking)
Sea salt
Sesame seeds to garnish

Trim your green beans. Line up the tough ends and just snip them off, leaving the long and pretty tails on the other end.

Fill a pot with 1-2 inches of water, place a steaming basket filled with green beans inside, and steam for about 4-5 minutes. Be very careful not to overcook them--not only does this result in a loss of flavor, but also a loss of important vitamins and nutrients.

Meanwhile, combine the vinegar, soy sauce, oil, and garlic. When your green beans are done (with a crunch, but not too raw, and definitely not even close to being soggy!), toss them in the bowl with the dressing. Season with sea salt (at first I wrote seal salt) and pepper to taste, and garnish with sesame seeds.

Serves 2 in my veggie-fanatic-green-bean-obsessed household, but probably 4 in any normal household.

Use that leftover sauce! Cook up some rice in chicken broth, and steam some carrots, green beans, and broccoli. Toss the veggies in the leftover sauce, serve over the rice, and pour any extra sauce over the rice. Top with sesame seeds. It's delicious for lunch.

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