Green Bean Salad with Mustard Seeds and Tarragon

Know what’s really cool? ………….
……….. having a daughter who’s not only a best friend, but also one of your most favorite people on earth! That’s my Caitlyn – you’d love her if you met her –  a sweet, fun friend,  great wife, dedicated mom and caring, thoughtful daughter. She’s one of the most honest, straightforward people I know and often helps keep her old mum in line and on-task!

I love spending time with her and, though she lives in London, (yes, as in England!) our hearts are never far apart. I can’t stand to be away from her and her sweet family for long and when I visit, we get to spend wonderful, extended time together, morning, noon and night! We enjoy doing all sorts of things together in London; biking and walking through the lovely parks and along the lazy Thames, scouting out unique treasures in myriads of delightful consignment shops, drinking tea and eating scones while watching lovers rowing on the Serpentine, and discovering delicious new cafes, pubs and restaurants all over the city. One of our very favorites is – well, on second thought, I’ll just let her tell you about it as she shares a fabulous fresh recipe …

When mom came to London last September, she kept talking about this restaurant we just HAD to try. She hadn’t yet been there, but had read about it somewhere in the blogosphere I believe. So, the first day after she and my dad arrived on their overnight flight from the States, I asked, “So, would you rather take a nap this afternoon or try Ottolenghi?”. The obvious answer from these two foodies was, “Try Ottolenghi!” So off we went in a black cab to sample what we found to be a fabulous array of food. Well, I’ve been back many times after that initial introduction and it has NEVER disappointed.

I think one of the best things about this, mainly take-out restaurant is the way they make ordinary vegetables incredibly interesting and appealing. I ordered this delicious dish recently and haven’t been able to get it out of my mind, I finally Googled it and made it for a few special guests who were visiting last week- my brother and sister-in-law, Lindsay! Hope you enjoy eating your “veg”, as they call it here, as much as we did, cheers!
~ Caitlyn

Green Bean Salad with Mustard Seeds & Tarragon
1 ¼ cups, (250g) green beans, trimmed
2 ¼ cups, (250g) snow peas, trimmed
1 ¾ cups, (250g) green peas (fresh or frozen)
2 teaspoons coriander seeds, roughly crushed with a mortar and pestle
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon nigella seeds
½ small red onion, finely chopped
1 mild fresh red chile, seeded and finely diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons chopped tarragon
coarse sea salt
1 cup (50g) baby chard leaves (optional)Directions:
1. Fill a medium saucepan with cold water and bring to a boil. Blanch the green beans for 5 minutes, then immediately lift them out of the pot with a slotted spoon and set aside. In the same pot, blanch the snow peas for 2 minutes, remove and set aside. Finally, blanch the peas for 30 seconds, remove and set aside. Run all the vegetables under cold water to stop the cooking process, drain well and combine in a large bowl.2. Put the coriander seeds, mustard seeds and oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. When the seeds begin to pop, pour the contents of the pan over the beans and peas. Toss together, then add the nigella seeds, red onion, chile, garlic, lemon zest and tarragon. Mix well and season with salt to taste.


3. Just before serving, gently fold the chard leaves, if using, in with the beans and peas, and spoon the salad onto plates or into bowls.

Serves 4


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