Monday, March 15, 2010
Asian inspired green bean salad with coconut
Because of all the hard work I had to put in to obtain fresh coconut meat, I didn't want to put it in a blender to make coconut milk. Maybe some other time, but not today. I wanted to fully enjoy the coconut flavor and I wanted it to be still recognizable in the dish as coconut, not as a flaky or milky substance, like I was used to.
This is what I came up with and it was truly one of the best salads I've ever eaten.
Asian inspired bean salad with coconut (serves 2)
For the salad:
3 cups (300 gr) green beans, chopped into small pieces (I used finely sliced flat beans, but ordinary green beans will work fine)
2 cups (100 gr) mung bean sprouts
1 oz (30 gr) unsalted peanuts, no skin
1.5 oz (50 gr) fresh coconut meat, very finely sliced
handful of coarsely chopped basil
handful of coarsely chopped cilantro
For the dressing:
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sweet chili sauce
1 tsp sugar (or the equivalent in your favorite sweetener)
2 tbsp lime juice (or lemon)
2 kefir lime leaves, very (very very) finely chopped
Blanch the beans and sprouts. Drain and set aside to cool (I put the lot in the fridge to speed up the cooling). Chop or grind the beans coarsely. Now, toss the coconut slices in a skillet (no oil) on medium heat and dry roast for a minute. Be careful, because they burn easily. Set aside.
Prepare the dressing. Mix all the ingredients for the dressing together. Drizzle the dressing on top of the vegetables and mix well. Finally, add the peanuts, coconut, basil and cilantro and mix.
As a main course with some good meat, it serves 2, but if you make it as a side salad, it should be enough for 3 to 4 people. I addes some omelette pieces for some extra substance, since we didn't eat meat with this salad, but they can easily be omitted.