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Skillet Green Beans with Orange

By 9:19 AM , , , , , , ,

I never would've thought that green beans that hadn't been simmered in bacon and bacon fat all day could be wow-worthy. But these quick cooking and impressive beans blow the cooked all day ones out of the water. Leave it to The Lee Brothers (from their Simple Fresh Southern cookbook) to take green beans to the next level.

We paired these green beans with filet kebobs and buttermilk mashed potatoes.  Can you say amazing meal?

These beans are seriously addicting. The char on the green beans is fantastic and salty - a great contrast to the tangy sweetness from the orange segments, vinaigrette and peel.

The greatest thing, is these are easy to make - nothing complicated here. They whip up quicker than you'd think and your family and guests will never believe how simple they were to make.  This makes them an ideal side dish for company.  It doesn't hurt that it is really a pretty dish the way the orange pops off of the green and the splashes of black from the char.

A few notes:
- I followed this to a tee. I can't see how the recipe can be improved - and I don't say that often.
- I used a cast iron skillet, and definitely would recommend doing so.
- Take your time cooking up the beans - make sure you really get a lot of that char on them.
- If you have white plates or a white serving dish, I'd urge you to use them. The beans are beautiful and the white really showcases all the color.

Skillet Green Beans with Orange

1 large navel orange
2 teaspoons canola oil
1 pound green beans, ends trimmed
¾ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar, champagne vinegar, or rice vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper

Finely grate the zest of the orange and reserve it. Segment the orange and keep the sections and juice in a bowl.

In a large cast-iron skillet or sauté pan, heat the canola oil over high heat, swirling it around the pan so it coats the bottom thinly and evenly. When the oil begins to smoke, add the beans (in batches if necessary--don't crowd the pan) and scatter ½ teaspoon of the salt over them. Cook, stirring only every 1½ to 2 minutes, until the beans are half-blistered and blackened, about eight minutes. Transfer the beans to a serving platter or bowl. Lift the orange segments out of their juice (reserve the juice) and scatter them over the beans. Sprinkle ¼ teaspoon of the orange zest over the beans and oranges.

Add the vinegar, olive oil, and the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt to the bowl of orange juice, and whisk until thoroughly combined.

Pour the dressing over the beans. Toss, and season to taste with salt, black pepper, and the remaining orange zest.

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