Wax Beans with Mint

Every weekend during the summer, if we are lucky, there will be a good supply of wax beans at the farmers market. These golden yellow (and sometimes purple) versions of green beans are harvested young, and are sweet and tender. Here is a simple way to prepare them, with the subtle flavor of a mint infusion.

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Wax Beans with Mint Recipe

  • Yield: Serves 3-4.

Ingredients

wax-beans-mint-2.jpg

  • 1/2 pound wax beans
  • Several mint leaves
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt

Method

1 A little bit ahead of time, crush a few mint leaves (reserve some for garnish) with a mortar and pestle. Put the crushed mint leaves into a small jar and add a couple tablespoons of high quality olive oil to cover. Let sit for at least an hour if you can. The longer the mint is in the olive oil, the better the infusion.

2 Prepare the beans by cutting off and discarding the tips and ends. Snap the beans in half, if necessary, to have pieces about 2 inches in length.

3 15 minutes before serving bring an inch of water in a saucepan to a boil. Place the beans in a steamer basket in the saucepan. Cover and cook, until tender, about 10-15 minutes. Check for doneness after about 8 minutes or so. If a fork easily goes through them, they're done.

4 Remove beans from pan and place them into a serving bowl. Use a strainer to drizzle the mint-infused olive oil over the beans. Sprinkle salt over the beans to taste. (Fleur de sel would work really well with this dish.) Chop up a few more mint leaves to add as garnish.

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4 Comments

  1. Toni-

    Love this site! It’s my first post, and just wanted to say my Italian grandmom ALWAYS used fresh mint when preparing green beans. It’s especially delicious when served at room temperature as a salad with some good red wine vinegar. She always used mint in her fresh, homemade iced tea, too.

  2. Chef B.J. Lee

    Jumped up and put this one to the test!
    Wow!
    At the Request of my Taster (my loving Vegan wife) I added a little more Janes crazy mixed up salt…
    Yum-yum!

    Just a note, to speed up your infusion of the mint to oil, heat up the oil first,Heating it up in a Hot (Tap water) bath…

  3. Pieg!rl

    Would this recipe work with regular green beans?

    Yes, it would work fine with regular green beans. ~Elise

  4. Marie

    I think my experience with wax beans has been limited to three bean salad, which I love, but probably does not keep a bean’s “integrity.” Your preparation sounds simple, but satisfying, and that photo looks so inviting! I’d also love to see and try the purple wax beans sometime.

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