This is a short, sweet and cool one - perfect for summer.
I like beans a lot and eat them year round. I like them in their pods and out of their pods, and am not so seasonally biased that I only eat shelled beans in the winter and beans in their pods in the summer.
But, if I had to pick one bean dish that I only have in the summer, this would be it. The reasons for it, like much of my thinking in general, are more pragmatic than ideological - the lovely flat yellow beans required are only available in the warm months where I live, the cooking involves very little stove time, and the final product is best consumed well chilled.
Yellow Bean Salad
1/2 lb flat yellow beans
4 large garlic cloves, shredded or pressed
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
1 t sunflower oil
2 T apple cider vinegar
1/2 t sherry or red wine vinegar
1/4 t kosher salt
1 T cold water
Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil.
Trim the ends of the beans, and if you need too, cut each pod in two.
Place the beans in the boiling water and cook for 4 - 5 minutes, until barely tender.
While the beans are cooking, mix together the oil, vinegar, water, garlic and salt.
Drain the beans well and place in a shallow bowl, spreading them out as much as possible. Pour the dressing over the beans while they are still hot, and garnish generously with parsley.
Let sit until beans are room temperature, then refrigerate for at least an hour before serving. This dish gets better the longer it chills, so it can be made well in advance of serving.
And that’s it! With a piece of crusty bread, perfect light summer lunch,
To follow up something so simple, I thought dessert should be similarly easy going and decided to cut up this lovely Charentais melon, picked up at the same time as the beans. The French name made it sound fancier than a regular old cantaloupe, but unfortunately, I must have picked one that was not ripe enough. It smelled and looked delicious, but tasted barely sweet at all, requiring a follow-up with dessert number two - chocolate!