I love the combination of textures and flavours in this dish of green beans with figs and hazelnuts. I serve it cold, but it works equally well with warm beans, too. The sherry vinegar adds a sharp acidity to the sweet figs. Mix it up with golden raisins or dried sour cherries instead of figs, and substitute the hazelnuts for walnuts. It’s also good with some goat cheese, which seems to melt into the dressing. I like to use https://meredithdairy.com/our-products/marinated-cheese/
Here’s a salad with similar flavours using fresh figs: Yellow bean and fig salad with whipped goat’s cheese
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Green Beans with Figs and Hazelnuts
- 800 g green beans, washed and ends trimmed
- 1 red onion, peeled and finely sliced
- 1/2 cup roasted hazelnuts
- 1/2 cup dried figs, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup mint leaves
- 2 tbsp sherry vinegar
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Place the sliced onion and figs in a small bowl and add the sherry vinegar. I like to massage the vinegar into the onion slices to soften them up a bit. Set aside for 5 minutes.
- Blanch the beans in a bowl of boiling water for 2 minutes,(they will still have a bit of crunch), then drain and run under cold water for a few seconds. I like the beans crunchy.
- Put the beans on a plate or in a shallow bowl. Remove the figs and onions from the liquid and add to the beans. Reserve the vinegar.
- Whisk the olive oil and vinegar together with salt and pepper to make a dressing.
- Toss the beans in the dressing, then sprinkle the hazelnuts and mint on top. Serve immediately.