Here is another recipe from the wonderful Ottolenghi cookbook (I just pre-ordered the next one-yippee!). This salad is refreshing, crunchy and a little unusual. The nuts make it more substantial than a standard veggie salad, adding a warm and protein-y element.
I have made this salad twice. The first time I cooked the green beans and mangetout seperately as the recipe suggested, and it worked fine, but having all that water, saucepans and colanders was a bit too much of a logistical challenge for my very small brain. So the second time I made it, I cooked the veggies all-together, carefully timing it so that the mangetout went into the water after the green beans had been in for 3 minutes. But then small brain struck again, and I realised that it was far too much to all fit in the colander at the same time - and they need to be drained pretty quickly so that they can be refreshed, and the cooking ceased. I won't go into the details of the mental bean-balancing act that followed. So i will write the method staying true to Ottolenghi, and leave any time-saving ideas to your own judgement.
I have scaled down the oil somewhat from the original recipe - the addition of orange juice is mine as well (seemed silly not to incorporate it).
They suggest toasting the hazelnuts in the oven, but i always use a frying pan. For a simple reason that I always burn nuts and seeds if they are not toasting under my watchful gaze! I leave the choice of toasting venue up to you.
I recently tried a variation on this made by Suzy, which included fresh green peas, and dill and red onion instead of the chives and hazelnuts. Also potentially lemon instead of the orange - I forgot to ask.
They say that it serves 6 – but it stretches much further depending on how many other dishes you are serving with it.
400g green beans, stalks trimmed
400g mangetout (or sugar snaps, that works too)
70g hazelnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
1 orange, zested and juiced
20g chives, chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp hazelnut oil (or walnut oil, which is what I used)
salt and pepper
Bring plenty of water to the boil in a large saucepan (you need a lot of space for the veggies, to preserve the colour). Blanch the beans in the water for 4 minutes, the drain them in a colander and run them under tap water until cold. Leave to drain and dry. It is really important to make sure that they get completely cold so that they don’t continue to cook – no-one wants overcooked green beans! Repeat this with the mangetout, but only cook for 1 minute (see above note).
Mix the garlic and chives with the oils, zest and a tbsp or so of orange juice, and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss the dressing with the green beans and mangetout, and scatter the hazelnuts over the top.