Over the years I've amassed so many cookbooks that I vowed never to buy another. But invariably a new one comes along that is so inspiring and unique that I just can't resist. Such is the case with "Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London's Ottolenghi", by Israeli chef Yotam Ottolenghi. It's a stunning book with luscious food photographs that beckon you into the kitchen. Now this is not your typical vegetarian cookbook, nor is Yotam Ottlolenghi a vegetarian, but he has managed to elevate vegetarian cooking to it's highest level. I'm truly enjoying cooking my way through this book and have marveled at everything that I've made. One of my favorite dishes has been his Soba Noodles with Eggplant and Mango, but that's not what I'm sharing here today. We gobbled it up so quickly that my camera never stood a chance. Instead, I'm posting a delicious Green Bean Salad with Mustard Seeds and Tarragon, simply because of the delectable home grown green beans that made an appearance at the market the other day. There is one substitution in the recipe: snap peas instead of pea pods. Otherwise the recipe is true to the book. Hope you enjoy this little taste of summer!
Slightly adapted from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi
- 1-1/4 cups green beans, trimmed
- 2-1/4 cups snow peas, trimmed
- 1-3/4 cups green peas, fresh or frozen
- 1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1 mild red chile, seeded and finely diced
- 2 tsp. coriander seeds, roughly crushed with a mortar and pestle
- 1 tsp. mustard seeds
- 3 T. olive oil
- 1 tsp. nigella seeds
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- grated zest of 1 lemon
- 2 T. fresh tarragon, chopped
- coarse sea salt
- 1 cup baby chard leaves (optional)
- Blanch the green beans in boiling water for 4 minutes.
- Remove with a strainer and immediately refresh in ice water.
- Drain and dry.
- Repeat with snow pea pods or snap peas but boil for only 1 minute.
- Refresh in ice water.
- Drain and dry.
- If using frozen peas, allow to defrost. If using fresh ones, blanch for 20 seconds and then refresh.
- Combine the beans, snow peas, and peas in a large mixing bowl.
- Put the coriander seeds, mustard seeds and oil in a small saucepan and heat up. When the seeds begin to pop, pour over the beans and peas.
- Toss together.
- Add the nigella seeds, red onion, chile, garlic, lemon zest, and tarragon.
- Mix well and season with salt to taste.
- Just before serving, gently fold in the chard leaves, if using.
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