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Categories: Quick and Easy, Salads, Vegetarian

Green bean salad with brioche croutons and tarragon aioli

Green bean salad with brioche croutons and tarragon aioli
Los Angeles Times

Green beans sing in a crunchy-creamy salad from Josef Centeno, executive chef at Opus restaurant. Tarragon gives the aioli a refreshing herbal note and a walnut vinaigrette provides the perfect hit of acid. "It's a dish that has gone through ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour | Serves 6
Note: From Josef Centeno, executive chef at Opus. Reserve remaining aioli and vinaigrette for another use. For the grated egg, place two eggs in a pot with salted water to cover. Bring to a boil; simmer 12 minutes. Shock in an ice bath; then peel and grate.

Tarragon aioli

  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 3/4 cup to 1 cup grapeseed or neutral flavored oil
  • 2 teaspoons diced shallots
  • 1 teaspoon tarragon
  • 1 tablespoon chervil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar, or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons grated hard-boiled egg
  • 2 teaspoons chopped cornichons

Step 1In a blender or food processor, add the egg, garlic and Dijon. Let the blender run for 30 seconds, then slowly (drop by drop) add the grapeseed oil until it starts to thicken. (If it gets too thick, add a little water.)

Step 2Add the shallots, tarragon and chervil; blend. Add one-fourth teaspoon salt, one-eighth teaspoon pepper and the vinegar; blend.

Step 3Stir in the grated egg and cornichons. Adjust salt and vinegar to taste. Makes 1 1/4 cups.

Walnut vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup sherry vinegar
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons walnut oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons grated onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper, or to taste

Step 1Combine the vinegar, olive oil, walnut oil, onion and garlic in a blender until emulsified. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Makes 3/4 cup.

Green bean salad

  • 2 cups brioche, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 ounces blue lake beans, trimmed (cut in half if beans are very long)
  • 4 ounces yellow wax beans, trimmed (cut in half if beans are very long)
  • 3 tablespoons tarragon aioli
  • 1/4 cup walnut vinaigrette
  • 1 tablespoon grated hard-boiled egg
  • Pinch of shallots, minced
  • Pinch of chervil, chopped, plus additional for garnish
  • Pinch of chive, snipped, plus for garnish
  • Pinch of tarragon, chopped, plus for garnish
  • Pinch of dill, chopped, plus for garnish
  • Pinch of lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon Parmesan (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon toasted walnuts or hazelnuts (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Step 1Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Toss the bread in the melted butter, garlic, thyme and olive oil. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until the croutons turn a nice golden brown. Set aside.

Step 2In a medium pot, blanch the beans in salty boiling water until their raw flavor is gone but they are still crunchy, 2 to 4 minutes. Shock them in a salty ice bath; drain. Set aside.

Step 3Put the tarragon aioli and walnut vinaigrette in a bowl and mix well. Add the croutons, grated egg, shallots, chervil, chive, tarragon and dill. Coat everything well with the dressing. Add the beans and mix well.

Step 4Finish with the lemon zest and the Parmesan and nuts, if using, and a little more vinaigrette if needed. Season with salt and pepper to taste and garnish with chervil, chive, tarragon and dill. Divide the salad among four plates and serve.

Each serving:
442 calories; 4 grams protein; 17 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams fiber; 41 grams fat; 10 grams saturated fat; 78 mg. cholesterol; 86 mg. sodium.
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