The recipe is a spin on the Sichuan “dry-fried” preparation for string beans. Dry-frying, if you are unfamiliar, is a complete misnomer — classic recipes call for blanching beans in heaps of oil, making the technique more similar to deep frying than anything else.
BA‘s recipe pares the oil way back and calls for finishing the beans with garlic, crushed red pepper flakes, and capers (as opposed to the more traditional shallots, Sichuan peppercorns, garlic, and ginger). The minimal ingredient list coupled with the enticing photo of the shriveled, glistening beans strewn with golden slivers of garlic had me longing for summer.
When the first green beans arrived in our CSA, I immediately pulled up this recipe but, for whatever reason, took a different path: instead of cooking the beans in oil stovetop, I broiled them; and while the beans cooked, I infused a few tablespoons of oil in a small skillet with the same aromatics as BA: garlic, capers, and crushed red pepper flakes.
In just about 5 minutes, when the green beans looked blistered to my liking, I piled them on a platter and poured the spicy, garlicky oil overtop. No joke: I ate the entire pound of green beans standing at the counter hovered over the platter.
Friends! These beans are so good and simple to prepare, too. The hardest part is slicing the 6 cloves of garlic thinly, which, if you are brave, you can do with a mandoline. And if you start the oil, garlic, pepper flakes, and capers in a cold pan, you’ll ensure you won’t burn the garlic. Just be patient: there’s a fine line between garlic that’s crispy and caramelized and burnt and bitter.
That’s it! I hope you give it a go. The method has me wondering if it might work with broiled asparagus? broccoli? cauliflower? peppers? I can’t imagine a charred vegetable that wouldn’t welcome a sizzle of salty, fragrant, fiery oil.
Like Char? Five Blistered Favorites:
- Charred Broccoli Salad with Dates & Almonds
- Crispy, Oven-Roasted Cabbage Wedges
- Burnt Carrots with Honey & Almonds
- 4-Ingredient Balsamic-Roasted Peppers
- Blistered Poblanos Stuffed with Corn & Quinoa
*FYI, always a great read!
Inspired by the flavors in this recipe in Bon Appetit.
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (or less if you are sensitive to heat)
- 1 tablespoon capers
- 1 lb. green beans, stemmed
- kosher salt to taste
- Heat the broiler to high for at least 15 minutes. Line a rimmed sheet pan with aluminum foil.
- In a small skillet, place 2 tablespoons of the oil, the garlic, crushed red pepper flakes (start with a quarter teaspoon if you are sensitive to heat), and capers. Turn the heat to low and let the oil slowly infuse.
- Meanwhile, toss the green beans on the prepared sheet pan with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and kosher salt to taste. Taste a green bean raw — it should taste nicely seasoned. Transfer pan to broiler and cook 2 minutes. Check. If the beans aren’t beginning to char, return for another 1 to 2 minutes. If they are charring, toss, and return to the broiler for another 2 minutes. Check again. Remove from oven if the beans are blistered to your liking, otherwise, cook for another minute or so. (Note: When my broiler has preheated sufficiently, my beans consistently blister in 5 minutes, with one toss halfway through. Every oven is different, however, so be vigilant!)
- Transfer blistered green beans to a serving platter.
- Meanwhile, your olive oil should be gently shimmering with the garlic, capers, and pepper flakes. Turn the heat up to medium or high and keep a close watch. Stir occasionally and as soon as you see the garlic beginning to brown at the edges and crisp up, remove the pan from the burner and pour the oil over the beans.
- Gently toss. Taste. Season with more salt if desired. Serve immediately.
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: Broiler/Stovetop
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: blistered, broiled, green beans, garlic, spicy, capers, chilies, crushed red pepper flakes