Yield: 6 servings as a side dish
Pistou is a French variation of pesto and makes for a nice, simple dressing. This recipe is easy to make ahead. You can prepare the pistou up to 6 hours ahead and refrigerate it – same goes for the beans. Store them separately and then toss them together at the last minute. Soaking the onions really mellows their flavor – in a good way. I added a bit of fresh lemon juice along with salt and pepper for seasoning.
Ingredients for pistou:
- 2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
- 6 garlic cloves, minced (1 1/2 tablespoons)
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
Ingredients for salad:
- 1 medium red onion, halved lengthwise, then thinly sliced crosswise
- 1 1/2 lb haricots verts or other thin green beans, trimmed
Make the pistou:
Purée all pistou ingredients in a food processor until basil is finely chopped.
Make the salad:
Soak onion in cold water 15 minutes, then drain in a colander and pat dry.
While onion soaks, cook beans in a 6- to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until just tender, 3 to 6 minutes, then drain in a large colander. Transfer to a large bowl of ice and cold water to stop cooking, then drain again and pat dry.
Toss beans and onion with pistou. Season with salt and pepper.