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Sautéed Haricots Verts and Shallots

Serves: Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound haricots verts or very small string beans, tips removed
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Procedures:

This harmonious combination of green beans, shallots, and butter is a winner. Try to get authentic haricots verts, thin very young green beans — available in specialty food stores or at farmers’ markets — or choose the smallest, firmest regular string beans you can find. Make sure to cook them fully; they should be tender, not crunchy. Too often beans are just blanched, and their taste is not what it should be.

Bring 1½ cups water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the beans and cook, covered, over high heat for 7 to 8 minutes, until they are tender but still firm to the bite. Drain the beans and spread them on a large platter to cool.

At serving time, heat the butter and oil in a large skillet. When they are hot, add the shallots and sauté for about 10 seconds. Add the beans, salt, and pepper and sauté for about 2 minutes, until the beans are heated through. Serve.

by Jacques Pépin

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