Green Beans Almondine is not only an easy side dish, but it's absolutely delicious! The beans are jazzed up with wonderfully fragrant garlic and shallots, and they have texture from crunchy almond flakes.
Bring a large pot of well-salted water to boil. Add the green beans and cook for 4 minutes. They should be lightly cooked but still some crispiness and ‘squeak’ when you take a bite.
Drain the beans and immediately plunge the blanched beans into the bowl of iced water and leave them for a few minutes.
Meanwhile, melt the butter (or vegan margarine) in a large frying pan until it foams. Add the garlic, shallots and almonds and cook for 3 minutes or until it all just begins to brown. Drain the green beans and add them to the pan for a few minutes, gently tossing to heat.
Add a light squeeze of lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.
Don't over-blanch the beans. You just want them to slightly cook but still be slightly crunchy. They will continue cooking when heated up in the pan.
Trim the tops and tails of the green beans - they're just a bit nicer to eat that way.
The ice bath is an important step. It stops the beans from cooking so they don't go soggy. It also keeps them bright green. If you don't have any ice, really cold water works. Put the bowl of water in the freezer or fridge while the beans are boiling.
This is a vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free side dish.
Delicious as a Thanksgiving or Christmas side dish or with mushroom steaks.