Red rice makes a happily nutty addition to the classic mix of green beans and almonds. [Photograph: Françoise Nicol]
Did anyone else consume a variation of green beans with almonds as a kid at almost every “expensive” household meal? My parents served it constantly, always slicked with a generous assisting of melted butter. This green bean salad from The French Market Cookbook stimulates that meal while including its own twists. To increase the bulk of the salad, author Clotilde Dusoulier includes cooked red rice. Red rice is particularly nutty (and an enjoyable color), so it works in consistency with the almonds themselves. In addition, she includes almond butter to the salad dressing; not only does the butter certainly up the nut element, but it also serves as an emulsifier, so the dressing ends up being luxe and creamy.
Why I picked this recipe: The pairing of green beans and almonds is among my favorites, so this hearty take on that combination was an obvious choice.
What worked: The very nutty red rice was an ideal match for the abundant almond butter vinaigrette. Sophisticated haricots verts brought the easy salad into supper celebration territory.
What didn’t: If you’re fanatic about crisp-tender beans, you’ll want to nix the steaming and mild cooling technique for blanch and shock.
Recommended tweaks: You can substitute any brown or wild rice blend for the red rice. And if you’re looking to blend it up with the nuts, hazelnuts and hazelnut butter would be great options. You could even attempt making the meal with sunflower seeds (and butter) if you need to go nut-free.
Reprinted with permission from The French Market Cookbook: Vegetarian Recipes from My Parisian Cooking Area by Clotilde Dusoulier. Copyright2013 Released by Clarkson Potter Publishers, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a department of Random House, Inc. All rights booked. Available any place books are offered.