If you're tired of plain old boiled beans for dinner why not try a fresh green bean salad instead? Whether you get your green or yellow beans from the grocery store or your garden this dish will look as good as it tastes.
1 pound fresh green beans, ends trimmed
1 medium sized zucchini
1 large portebello mushroom
1/2 cup of chopped red onion
1 small jar of pimientos
1/2 cup salad oil
1/2 cup wine,cider, or balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic-minced or pressed
1/2 tsp. mustard powder
1 tsp. celery seed
1-2 tbsp.brown sugar
1 tsp salt
Step 1- Blanching the Beans:
Trim ends from beans and rinse in a colander. Put beans in a pot of boiling water or steamer and cook for 2-3 minutes. While beans are cooking fill a pot or bowl with water and ice cubes.
Drain boiling water from beans and immediately immerse them in the ice water bath. This stops them from cooking and keeps them crisp, vibrant and green. Notice the before and after pictures:
See how they look before blanching-pale and slightly browning in spots, they will also be tough to chew in this state...
Now they are full of vibrant colour and just the right amount of crunch...
When beans are cool, put them in a colander to drain water, then cut them in half on a cutting board. Add them to a large salad bowl.
Step 2-Preparing the Salad:
Cut zucchini lengthwise, discarding the middle seed section. Cut lengths into 1/4 inch strips and chop strips into 2-3 inch lengths. Add to bowl.
Chop the portobello mushroom into approx. 1 inch squares and add to salad. Add onions and pimentos(drain water from jar first). You can use canned mushrooms if desired.
Mix dressing from the ingredients listed, adjust salt and/or sugar to taste and add to salad. mix well and refrigerate for 2-3 hours. Toss salad a couple of times while cooling and just before serving. This salad should be eaten fairly soon after the 2-3 hour cooling as the mushroom and zucchini will get soggy after a while.
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