Our garden has been doing well this year, and thus we've had an abundance of tomatoes, green beans, and basil on our hands. Faced with pounds of green beans and tomatoes just asking to be eaten, my SO created this salad. The lime juice and feta cheese contrasted well with the fresh vegetables, and overall this made for a great (and healthy) summer meal. Since we just made this today, it's this week's end-of-the-week recipe blogging post.
2 pounds fresh green beans, washed, trimmed, and halved
1 pound tomatoes, chopped into bite-sized pieces
1/2 small onion, ~1/4 to 1/2 cup, quartered and thinly sliced
~1/2 to 3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 shallot, finely minced
1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil, loosely packed
juice of 2 large limes
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
To make the dressing:
1) Add all the dressing ingredients to a salad shaker (or a bowl) and mix until combined. Let stand a few minutes before using.
To make the salad:
1) Cook the green beans. To do this, bring a large pot of salted water (~1 1/2 tablespoons salt per 12 cups water) to a boil, add the beans, and cook until they're tender (~4-10 minutes; the time will vary depending on the maturity of your beans, so check them periodically).
2) Remove the cooked beans from the boiling water and immerse them in a bowl of cold water. Once they've cooled, transfer them to a strainer to drain off most of the water.
3) Put the cooled green beans, tomatoes, onion, and feta into a large bowl. Add as much of the dressing as you want (we added approximately a cup) and mix gently but thoroughly.
4) Serve immediately.
Since this was made without a recipe, all amounts are approximate and flexible; feel free to improvise. And, as with our tomato yogurt salad, this probably requires good fresh vegetables (especially good tomatoes) to be tasty.
As we reported with our honey mustard salad dressing, we make our own whole-grain mustard from scratch (see the recipe here); if you don't have whole-grain mustard available, we'd suggest substituting a grainy mustard.
We ended up with about a half cup of dressing left over; if you don't want extra you may want to scale down the dressing ingredients a bit.
The green bean cooking instructions are from Joy of Cooking.
Rombauer, I. S., M. R. Becker, and E. Becker. 1997. Joy of Cooking. Scribner, NY.
[Updated December 2007 to add a link to our homemade mustard recipe.]