This very simple salad is both colorful and has a distinctive flavor that results from being dressed in lime juice and a touch of sesame oil. With this salad I cut beans into half-inch lengths — an unexpected look for what is typically a salad of long beans — and much more fork friendly.
Do ahead Beans may be cooked up to a day ahead but best not to dress salad until ready to serve.
1/2 pound yellow beans
1/2 pound green beans
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, about half a lime
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, optional
1. Snap stem end of yellow and green beans. Line up beans and cut into 1/2-inch lengths.
2. Bring a generous amount of generously salted water to a full boil. Add beans and return to boil. How long to cook depends on tenderness of beans. Young and tender beans will cook in 4 to 5 minutes with more mature beans taking longer. The best thing to do is taste as you cook until beans are tender, but still al dente. Once beans are cooked to your liking, drain and immediately run under cold water to stop cooking and set color.
3. In a bowl, combine beans and lime juice and toss. Add olive oil, toasted sesame oil, salt and pepper. Top with optional toasted sesame seeds.
Yield 1 pound of mixed beans will serve 4 – 6, depending on what else you are serving.
To toast optional sesame seeds
While you can toast seeds and nuts in the oven, I find the quickest way to do a small batch is in a small fry pan over medium heat.
Place seeds in cold fry pan over moderate heat. Shake occasionally. Once seeds begin to tan, shake frequently until they reach a deep tan. Be careful at the end to not let seeds go to far.
Turn seeds out on to a plate to stop cooking.