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Spicy Blistered Beans

Next level green beans

Sometimes it can be hard to find new ways with vegetables. Green beans, for example, usually get boiled, steamed, or chopped up and carelessly tossed into a stir-fry at the last moment, never quite reaching their true potential.

Today we’re sharing one of our favourite ways to cook green beans, which turns the humble vegetable into a star dish infused with wok hei and bursting with Sichuanese flavour. The key technique is ‘dry-frying’, where the raw beans are rapidly tossed in a hot wok until they begin to blister.

Traditionally the dish uses yard-long beans. They have a particular robustness that stands up well against the intense dry-frying. However, French beans and ordinary green beans will do the trick nicely too. We also use doubanjiang (chilli bean paste) for that Sichuanese flair, but feel free to use a dollop of any good chilli sauce. Be sure to add the Chinese mushrooms too – their fleshiness and daan (springy) mouthfeel adds a delightful extra layer of texture to the dish.

This recipe is adapted from the Dumpling Sisters Cookbook

Photo by Paul Winch-Furness

 

 

Serves
4, as a side/sharing dish
Ingredients

4 dried Chinese/Shiitake mushrooms
2 pinches granulated sugar
400g yard-long beans or green beans, trimmed
vegetable oil

FOR THE SEASONING
2 cloves garlic, finely diced
1 tbsp ginger, finely diced
4 spring onions, white parts only, finely sliced
1/2 tsp cracked Sichuan peppercorns

FOR THE SAUCE
3 tsp doubanjiang/chilli bean sauce, or other chilli sauce
2 tsp Shaoxing rice wine
pinch of salt
1 1/2 tsp granulated sugar

Sometimes it can be hard to find new ways with vegetables. Green beans, for example, usually get boiled, steamed, or chopped up and carelessly tossed into a stir-fry at the last moment, never quite reaching their true potential.

Today we’re sharing one of our favourite ways to cook green beans, which turns the humble vegetable into a star dish infused with wok hei and bursting with Sichuanese flavour. The key technique is ‘dry-frying’, where the raw beans are rapidly tossed in a hot wok until they begin to blister.

Traditionally the dish uses yard-long beans. They have a particular robustness that stands up well against the intense dry-frying. However, French beans and ordinary green beans will do the trick nicely too. We also use doubanjiang (chilli bean paste) for that Sichuanese flair, but feel free to use a dollop of any good chilli sauce. Be sure to add the Chinese mushrooms too – their fleshiness and daan (springy) mouthfeel adds a delightful extra layer of texture to the dish.

This recipe is adapted from the Dumpling Sisters Cookbook

Photo by Paul Winch-Furness

 

 

GET THE METHOD →

Soak the mushrooms in a bowl of hot water with the sugar for 20 minutes, then drain. Discard the stalks and finely dice the caps. Mix the mushrooms and the seasoning ingredients together in a small bowl an set aside.
In another bowl, combine the sauce ingredients with 2 tbsp of water. Set aside. Rinse the beans, and if using yard-long beans, chop them into 8-10cm long lengths.
Heat 1 1/2 tbsp of oil in a wok or frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the beans and stir fry for 5 minutes, until they are blistered but still firm. Remove them onto a double layer of kitchen paper to rest.
Return the wok to a medium heat, add 1 tsp of oil, the mushrooms and the seasoning ingredients. Stir fry for 30s then switch off the heat. Wait two minutes, then add the sauce mixture. Return the wok to a medium heat and add the beans. Stir fry for a minute or so until the beans are warm and coated with the sauce. Serve immediately.
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