It was a cold and long winter. I’m now ready to explore the fresher side of life.
I’m planning to be spending my Saturday’s this summer participating in a work-and-pick program. I dedicate two hours each week digging in the dirt and tending to a community garden. In exchange for my sweat and tears, I receive a portion of the bounty. I highly recommend it if you ever have an opportunity to do something similar in your area. It’s a great way to get some outdoor exercise, meet new people and be rewarded by some fresh vegetables in the process.
The program doesn’t start for a few more weeks. In the mean time, I’ve turned to my local fresh vegetable options. In this recipe, I opted to pair a modified version of my favorite vinaigrette with the crisp tender sensation of the mighty green been. To round things out, I decided to throw in some tomatoes and almonds for a lovely contrast of texture.
Green Bean Salad with Maple Dijon Vinaigrette
1 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed
½ cup slivered almonds, toasted
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
¼ cup olive oil
6 Tbl. maple syrup
1 tsp. fresh garlic, minced
2 Tbl. cider vinegar
1 Tbl. Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste
Drop the green beans in boiling water for 3-4 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and immediately drop the beans in a large bowl of ice water for 2 minutes. Drain well and toss into a large mixing bowl with the almonds and tomatoes.
Whisk together the olive oil, maple syrup, garlic, cider vinegar and mustard in a small mixing bowl until well combined. Season the vinaigrette with salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the green bean, tomatoes and almonds. Toss until the mixture is well coated. Serves 3-4 people as a side.
Authors Note: I like a lot of vinaigrette. You might not need or desire as much vinaigrette on your salad. Start with half and add to taste.