Green Bean Slaw

Green Bean Slaw Recipe


The last time I was in Rome, Wayne and I kept finding ourselves in the Testaccio neighborhood. It's across the river and a bit more of a walk to the historical center when compared to Trastevere, but it's the real deal. Anyone who has been here knows, it's a challenge to find a corner of Rome that isn't jam-packed with tourists. But Testaccio is one of them. The bustling market frequented by the locals functions as the hub of the area, and there is a bakery, espresso stop, and pizzeria on just about every block. We rented an apartment here for a few weeks, and I thought I'd share some photos along with a recipe for a nut-studded, slaw-like green bean salad I made for lunch yesterday from a few things I picked up in the nearby shops and stalls.

Green Bean Slaw Recipe

I've been primarily shooting with film, but I brought a digital camera as well. Mainly to take a few snapshots to share with you while I'm here. I took the camera out for a short walk early this morning. It's the time of day when things are just coming to life - cars beginning to retake the streets, kids waiting in front of schools, city workers sugaring espressos at cafe counters, bakery ovens going full tilt. Below our apartment there is one that specializes in long, thin slabs of pizza al taglio. Lots of different kinds - biancho, tomato, zucchini, etc. Olive oil soaked and so tasty.

Green Bean Slaw Recipe

As far as photography goes, the light and textures here are completely different than anything I see in San Francisco. It's part of what I love about traveling - whether it's to Rome or Paris or Kyoto - or even Napa, which is right in my backyard. Every place has its own distinct light, and part of what is interesting about a new place is getting to know it. Or at least attempting to get to know it. Weather changes it, also the time of year, buildings, pollution, and on and on. There are times when the light here seems almost pink to me, particularly in the early mornings.

Green Bean Slaw Recipe

Beyond Testaccio, I've been drinking caffe macchiati, eating cacio e pepi, and people watching from marble steps all over the city. We must be walking fifteen miles a day, and thank god it isn't any hotter. The weather has been quite mild which is helpful because I've been trying to explore a few of the more offbeat neighborhoods. Sometimes this involves a subway ride, a sweaty bus ride, a long walk - (or, often) all of the above. I don't remember which one of us instated the "no taxi" stipulation when we explore cities, but that's become the rule - public transportation or on foot. Anyways, Pigneto was cool, funky, and fun and I look forward to going back there once or twice more before I leave. Same with San Lorenzo.

Green Bean Slaw Recipe

For those of you who have been to Testaccio, it's amazing on the food front. Volpetti is around the corner - my supply for (in addition to a host of other things) sheep's milk ricotta and the most intense, luxe Greek yogurt ever. There is a shop dedicated to spices a block away, and another for fresh egg pasta. Sitting in the shaded park across the street from 00100 with a slice and a beer is really hard to beat. And the nice elderly lady I bought eggs from the last time I stayed in Rome is still selling in the corner of the Testaccio market, the yolks of her eggs just as orange as I remember.

Green Bean Slaw Recipe

A few notes about the salad. It is a mish-mash of ingredients to be sure. But somehow I think they work together. In addition to the green beans you have an arugula and shredded cabbage base punctuated with golden raisins plumped with sweet moscato wine. Beyond that, I tossed in some toasted walnuts, croutons, and shaved pecorino cheese. You get sweetness and saltiness from the raisins and cheese, and crunch from the nuts, croutons, and cabbage playing off the creaminess of the dressing. It's substantial enough to make a meal of, but not too heavy. It was quite hot the day I made it, and it made just the right lunch along with a couple other antipasti.

 
 
 
 

Green Bean Slaw Recipe

I used a moscato from Trani, Italy here, but feel free to experiment with other sweet white wines. The one I used was about 14% alcohol - just the right amount of boozy for a salad like this. As far as advanced prep goes - you can make the dressing a day or two ahead of time if you like. And you can slice the green beans, and make the croutons a day ahead of time as well. I used a wood-fired oven spelt walnut bread for the croutons here, but use whatever good bread you have on hand.

2 small handfuls (about 1/2 cup) golden raisins
1 cup / 240 ml Moscato / sweet white wine

Dressing:

yolk of one hard-boiled egg
3 tablespoons creme fraiche or heavy cream
1/3 cup / 80ml extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
-------------------------

1/2 a small cabbage, cored and shredded very finely
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

2 big handfuls green beans or haricot verts, very thinly sliced and cooked in a pot of boiling salted water for 20 seconds, drained (well) immediately, and cooled under cold running water.

A big handful of arugula, roughly chopped

2 handfuls (about 3/4 cup) toasted walnut halves

2 handfuls of torn rustic bread, pan-toasted until golden in a big splash of olive oil

A bit of shaved pecorino cheese

Place the raisins in a small bowl and cover with the wine. Let soak overnight, or for at least a few hours.

To make the dressing, mash the yolk of the egg in a small bowl. Gradually mash and stir in the creme fraiche. Very slowly add the olive oil beating constantly. It should be smooth and glossy. Whisk in the vinegar and lastly the salt. Taste and adjust if needed.

When you're close to being ready to serve the salad, toss the cabbage and the vinegar together in a large bowl and let sit for 10 minutes.

Just before serving, drain the raisins and add to the cabbage. Add the green beans, arugula, and most of the walnuts. Toss a few times. Add about 2/3 of the dressing and toss gently, but well. Taste and add more dressing if you like. Add most of the croutons and most of the pecorino cheese, before tossing again. Serve topped with the remaining walnuts and pecorino.

Serves 6-8.

Prep time: 180 min - Cook time: 20 min

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Your Comments


Sam
September 27, 2010

I'm really getting into interesting salads at the moment as the weather warms up in Australia, and this one looks yummo! And the stories of the back neighbourhoods in Rome take me right back... stand up macchiatos, street corner markets, the piazzas, and of course the endless walking to impossibly gorgeous sites. Buono!

 

KateP
September 27, 2010

Heidi, I hope you are getting some of the summer you were hoping for! I like the reference to the lady selling eggs - it is nice when you revisit a place and there are little things that are familiar - enjoy the rest of your trip.......

 

Joe @ Eden Kitchen
September 27, 2010

Sounds like my kind of salad! It is finally starting to warm up in Auckland and i'm craving salads like this. By the way I am insanely jealous of your temporary 'hood...

 

Maria
September 27, 2010

I live in Monteverde and bike through Testaccio every morning. I check your website more or less every day, so it was extra nice to see an entry from my own neighbourhood! I'm still not entirely comfortable with the veggies I find in the Roman markets, so I hope to see more suggestions for what to do with them, since many of your usual recipes are out of reach for me here in Rome (whole grains and non-traditional flours, natural sweeteners and most of the spices are simply not available here).

Could you let me know which spice shop you are referring to in this entry? I must have missed this one.

A recommendation for you, if you haven't been here already: Claudio Torcé's gelateria on Viale Aventino 59 (about a block down from the Esso gas station) is an absolute must. They have the most creative flavours (the strudel is great, so is the rice, the black sesame, and the brie and blueberry when they have it .. oh and the ginger .. and .. ). Do go! (I work one block north of it and just cannot keep away). Closed on Mondays, mind.

HS: Hi Maria! Thanks for the gelato rec. I'm making note of it now...So, there is a natural foods store just around the corner from where I'm staying as well - lots of cool ingredients - grains and the like. I'll have a closer look at the sweeteners the next time I'm in there. It is near the spice shop too. I'll make note of the street names and will update here soon. If you see me out waiting for the 280 bus please say hello - I seem to spend a bit of time at that bus stop...

 

Hande
September 27, 2010

Heidi, so nice to see and read some of your impressions! Give us more, please!
@Maria : you can find all the things you are missing in the Castroni shops.

HS: Hande, thanks again for inviting me to your wonderful tasting. I really enjoyed the range of wines. Hoping I can make it to another one before I leave.

 

Anonymous
September 27, 2010

Hande: Really? I go to the one in Trastevere regularly and I still feel like I'm missing half of what I need. Can you find whole wheat pastry flour fex? Or evaporated cane juice? I see they just got amaranth, which I'm pretty excited about.

 

chika
September 27, 2010

ciao heidi - i hope you are catching up on the proper dose of summer you deserve! (is it still warm down there?) rome is such a photogenic place isn't it? (well, so is SF, but still..). have a great time and please, please share a lot more of your images with us when you're ready!

p.s. i think you've got the same pretty plate that a friend of mine in italy has!

HS: I picked it up at a flea market neat the Piazza de Popolo a couple days after I got here. Now, to get it home in one piece...

 

a Teenage Gourmet
September 27, 2010

The photos of this post are stunning!

 

I'm impressed that you mostly shoot with film - I wish I was a good enough photographer to be able to do that. I don't know what I'd do without digital so I can take lots and lots of shots! :)

 

Simply Life
September 27, 2010

I love the pictures, the stories and this salad! Yum!

 

SoontobeinRome
September 27, 2010

Hello Heidi,

This post came at a perfect time; I'll be visiting Rome for the first time in late October. If you wouldn't mind divulging which agency you've arranged your stay with and in which neighborhood, it would greatly help me in narrowing down my accommodations!

Many thanks!

 

Jeff
September 27, 2010

Perfect timing. Just about to pick last of the season beans...

 

Merry
September 27, 2010

I came across your site whilst surfing and have been visiting regularly ever since. Your philosophy of natural foods made simply, is in total agreement with mine.
I added your site to 'My Blog List' as it is one of my favourites. If you would be happy with it, In the near future I hope to write about my versions of some of the recipes featured here, of course, with links to your site. thanks :)

HS: Looking forward to seeing your take on the recipes featured here Merry. Thanks for the nice note.

 

Vicki @ Wilde in the Kitchen
September 27, 2010

My boyfriend and I also have a "no taxi" rule when we go on vacation, so I feel your pain! We're heading to Europe on Thursday and I forsee a lot of walking in my future!

Great pictures of Rome, I loved visiting there and enjoying the small cafes.

 

The French
September 27, 2010

This sounds so tasty. Can't wait to try. Hopefully, it will transport me to Italy and out of this hot shot of weather we're having in LA this week...

 

HPD
September 27, 2010

amazing photo work!

 

The Nervous Cook
September 27, 2010

This post makes me want to travel so much. The photos are lovely, with a wonderful story to match!

 

Katrina
September 27, 2010

Mmmm! I love the look of this salad!

 

I really like the idea of this salad. The dressing is so different from anything I usually make. I almost have to try it out so I can taste!

 

Satpreet
September 27, 2010

"It's part of what I love about traveling - whether it's to Rome or Paris or Kyoto - or even Napa, which is right in my backyard. Every place has its own distinct light, and part of what is interesting about a new place is getting to know it."

Yes! You have articulated this perfectly. I, personally, love the shadows in San Francisco, love the color of the light in the High Desert, and love the color of the greenery in Michigan. I cannot even imagine all of the different characteristics of light in Rome. I suppose I will stalk your flickr and find out. :)

 

Katie
September 27, 2010

I am not able to keep alcohol in the house so I'm wondering what (if anything) you would recommend to replace the wine here. For recipes that will be cooked, I usually sub a broth and cider vinegar mixture, but it doesn't seem that would work here. Maybe some sort of white grape juice?

 

Lani
September 27, 2010

Heidi,

What perfect timing! I was just writing an entry on the Testaccio market myself for a friend's book (have you visited the tomato man, yet?). Glad to hear you are enjoying it. Don't forget to check out all of David Lebovitz' gelato stops from his trip in June…

And your photos are amazing. Thanks for sharing.

-Lani

 

francesca
September 27, 2010

Hey Heidi, I've been following you from Trastevere for a couple of years now ....so nice to know you and Wayne are now around the corner!! If you have never been to Piazza San Cosimato food store you MUST go and visit. It's right on the corner between Via Natale del Grande and Piazza S. Cosimato. it's a trove of delicacies: grains, whole foods, nuts, sweets, spices etc. etc. it's been there for ages and it has a very special atmosphere, especially for a photographer . Their windows are amazing, and you will love the feel of it. Hope you can make it!! (If so, try the cornetti of Ms Vera, the Pasticceria on the same street!!)

 

Torrie @ a place to share...
September 27, 2010

Just as much as your post, I have LOVED seeing all of these comments... What a small world!!

...has everyone been to Testaccio except ME?? :)

 

Rossella
September 27, 2010

Great pics of Rome. Testaccio is one of the Eternal CIty's heart.
For the next time I would suggest you a walk in Monti.
I live in Rome for 7 years now, but I'm able to discover with great surprise something new each day

 

The Healthy Apple
September 27, 2010

Beautiful photographs, Heidi...an amazing post and another fabulous recipe....

 

Juliana
September 27, 2010

I'm in love with your salad dressings lately Heidi! Recently tried the buttermilk dressing from the Buttermilk Farro Salad and the miso dressing from the Miso Chopped Salad and LOVED them both.

I am definitely going to try this one this week.

Maybe a salad dressing cookbook could be a thing?

 

Azia
September 27, 2010

Great photos! The green bean thing looks amazing. I love green beans! My mom made green beans last night with lemon zest and tomatoes and I ate so much!

 

Ana
September 27, 2010

the lighting... it's been AMAZING here in Italy lately... HAS to be due to the Iceland volcano... that's MY theory... again, Heidi, if you come Venice (or any of Veneto, for that matter), please advise... :)

 

William Powell
September 27, 2010

Thank you, Heidi, for posting the info and photos on Rome.

 

Cooking with Michele
September 27, 2010

You are in my very favorite place in the whole world and I'm jealous! I've only been there a few days each time I go, using Rome as my starting point for travels around Italy, so I've never rented an apartment, but can tell some day I'm going to have to!

 

bridget
September 27, 2010

another great neighborhood is nomentana, i lived there for a few months and never saw tourists until i got downtown. the 80 bus picks up at p. san silvestro (around the corner from the spanish steps) and takes you north out of the city on corso trieste to villa ada which is perhaps even more beautiful and wonderful than the expected visit to villa borghese.

anyway, lovely post and lovely pictures :)

 

Anonymous
September 27, 2010

Heidi are you still in Roma? I would love to reccommend you a great off the beaten path place to eat...

 

Laura @ SweetSavoryPlanet
September 27, 2010

The salad looks tasty. I love salads with a lot of texture and flavors. Never been to Rome, so many places . . .

 

Rita Reyes
September 27, 2010

Green bean slaw looks delicious! Congratulations on making one of the top blogs!

Rita
Great Gifts

 

sofee_B
September 27, 2010

Heidi--your photography is as sumptuous as your recipes. thx for this fabulous prespective on Rome. I hope you and Maria meet up! I'm off to my mkt for ingredients...wishing on the green beans(:

 

Cool Springs TN
September 27, 2010

I love green bean slaw! We're going to try this recipe on Saturday. Thanks!

 

Yay Roma! We went this year and ate our way through the city. I miss it so!

 

Primordial Soup
September 27, 2010

Heidi, your post was the escapist highlight of my day!

Love, love, love the photos! Most striking to me is how happy the employees of the espresso cafe are to be serving their customers, and how seriously the baker takes the creation of his culinary art! Italian culture revolves around food, so it is quite obvious why you have chosen to rent an apartment in Rome and saturate yourselves in that atmosphere. Exploring neighborhood shops and markets, and having a kitchen in which to cook our 'finds' - is our idea of the ultimate in travel experiences, too.

Thanks to all the posters for the amazing "insider" travel info - culinary and photographic!

 

Maggie
September 27, 2010

This is great, getting to take a trip and see all the sites without the cost. I like looking at others trips. You make it sound wonderful. I have not tried the slaw, yet. It looks great though.

 

kim
September 27, 2010

I'm new here+feeling incredibly inspired by your recipes. Thank u

 

Tom @ Tall Clover
September 27, 2010

Now you're talkin' Heidi. I'm picking the last of my green beans and looking for a new recipe. I've been enjoying my healthy three-bean salad (recipe just posted), but as we all know, variety is the spice of life. Really look forward to trying this recipe. Thanks

 

Elizabeth
September 27, 2010

This seems like such an interesting texture and flavor combination. I'd love to give this a try, it's perfect food for the awful heatwave we've been having in the bay area. Thanks for sharing your wonderful travel experiences!

 

Maggie
September 27, 2010

I've got both arugula and green beans coming in this week's produce box. Nice timing! Can't wait to try this.

 

Emm
September 27, 2010

Your photos are gobsmackinly beautiful Heidi.
Hope you enjoy the rest of your time in Rome, good luck gettting that precious plate home safely :-)

 

Amanda
September 27, 2010

I spent a blissful week in Rome nearly 2 years ago (with a resentful teenager, who has since regretted her appalling behaviour) and pine for it an an almost daily basis.
My horrible teenager said wistfully just yesterday that she wishes she could go back. She can pay for herself next time! I also love salads like this that can really be a meal in themselves.

HS: This note made me laugh a little Amanda. I've definitely had my moments as the resentful teenager on family vacation. Glad we can all laugh about it now.

 

molly
September 27, 2010

So beautiful, Heidi. I feel like I'm along for the ride. I am head over heels for those forever blue shutters...

 

Roberta@Kitchen Canisters
September 27, 2010

September in Italy, I am so jealous! Even the thought the of fall harvest vegetables, roasted in olive oil, makes my mouth water. Thanks so much for sharing the photos and enjoy the adventure!

 

heidileon
September 27, 2010

Heidi, I don't know what is more beautiful or inviting: the recipe or the pictures. Thank you so much for sharing both!.

I agree with you on the light subject. Each village, city and country has such a different light color and reflection. Right know I'm enjoying my holidays at my hometown (Cuernavaca, Mexico) and the first thing I noticed when I arrived was how different light (and therefore) shadows reflects on everything.

Again, thanks.

 

Caitlin @ Amuse-bouche
September 27, 2010

Gorgeous photos! This looks so delicious!

 

Miriam
September 27, 2010

I love salads with nuts, for us vegetarians it makes the meal feel more complete. I can't wait to try it.

 

Another great recipe and I love the sounds of your dressing.
:-) Mandy

 

Cathy B. @ Bright Bakes
September 28, 2010

your photos are gorgeous. Earthy and real.
The salad? Well...I simply wish I already had it made and on my plate...my mouth is watering!
Love, Cathy B.

 

Claire
September 28, 2010

I LOVE the first picture. I am in love with it. Absolutely stunning.

HS: Thanks Claire.

 

Amelia
September 28, 2010

I live near Testaccio in a neighborhood called Garbatella...i highly recommend a walk through this neighborhood, and bring your camera! The light and architecture are truly one-of-a-kind and no tourists.

Take the metro from Piramide to Garbatella (or walk) and then head east. At first the buildings are nothing distinctive...keep walking and you will find the most amazing little 'hood where it seems that time stands still. Each building is entirely unique...the colors, the light, the chimneys, windows, terraces!

If you want to walk until dinner, find Moschino (ask around or email me) which sits in a gorgeous building with a view. It's the real deal trattoria. Enjoy!

HS: Thanks for the nice note and the tip Amelia, looking forward to exploring your hood, we have a couple days left. Moscino sounds great too. :)

 

The Rowdy Chowgirl
September 28, 2010

Amazing pictures. There really is something special about the light. Thanks for sharing!

 

Edith-Nicole
September 28, 2010

Thank you for your wonderful account of your trip so far. I will just have to make my way to Testaccio someday. The salad - as always - looks beautiful and delicious. I plan to make a version of it soon using whatever my CSA share has in store for me this week. P.S. I'm a devoted reader and borrower, and I made the seed soda bread last week and it was absolutely heavenly. Thank you so much for your dedication to this site!

 

Heidi - apples under my bed
September 28, 2010

I love mish-mash salads :)
The Testaccio neighbourhood sounds like heaven! It is so nice to explore the way you did - on foot, into the true neighbourhoods, seeing how the locals live. Rome has such a unique light, I know what you mean. And all the food sounds amazing.
Heidi xo

 

Sandra
September 29, 2010

Holy Cow! This looks great, but I'm completely intimidated by "very thinly sliced" greenbeans! I enjoy prep, but this seems like it would take forever. I've got a food processor that I use almost solely for pesto, but I wonder if it would work for such a task. The recipe sounds fabulous, but the prep sounds odious!

HS: Hi Sandra, I've done the shredding for "shredded" green bean dishes using the big holed cheese grater attachment for the food processor before. I shred them raw, then give them a quick dunk in boiling, salted water, or a quick saute. You definitely end up with something entirely different texturally, but it might work fine here.

 

Michelle @ Find Your Balance
September 29, 2010

That is downright decadent! Who knew veggies could be fit for a king like that. Well, I guess I knew, but I haven't had such a perfect example as this until now!

 

HappyWhenNotHungry
September 29, 2010

This looks amazing! I love the Testaccio neighborhood... it truly is the best neighborhood to go and get away from the crowds and find some truly local Roman cuisine.

 

SallyBR
September 29, 2010

Heidi, last year I happened to see a show with Anne Burrell, from the FoodTV, and she made a nice salad using raw green beans. They were cut extremely thin, and that was the secret to using them raw.

I've been making it quite often, and also using it in quick pasta dishes - I imagine it could work well with your slaw too....

Just thought I would mention..

Wonderful recipe and photos!

 

Katie@Cozydelicious
September 29, 2010

What beautiful photos! And I love this salad - I'm a huge fan of 'everything-but-the-kitchen-sink ' dishes and this certainly qualifies. Yum!

 

Jessica
September 30, 2010

Heidi, your photos scream Testaccio. I Iove this neighborhood. You have really managed to catch the feel and the light. Not to mention this beautiful salad. Looking forward to your next post!

 


I have yet to visit Rome, I have been to a few places in Europe and food, people and culture are great to experience. Sounds like you had a great trip. I love this green bean slaw ! Anything with raisin has a surprise sweetness.

 

Suzy Scragg
October 1, 2010

Hmmm... 6 months pregnant here. Should I be concerned about consuming the drunken raisins? Those of you who've made it... if I left them out would it hurt the recipe too much? I'm not a fan of raisins to begin with but I like to try Heidi's recipes as they are before modifying them...

 

bianca
October 1, 2010

Such beautiful pictures; they make me want to take off on a european adventure of my own!

xoxo
bianca

 

Don
October 2, 2010

Such a beautiful old city. You lucky dogs. Maybe oneday I'll actually be able to find my way to that corner of the woods. If when I do, I'' be on the lookout for that greenbean slaw. Goodness that simply looks scrumptious.

 

Sayer
October 2, 2010

Now that they are in season, my fridge is full of green beans--I pickled some last week and made your green bean slaw this week. Thanks for the creative recipe!

 

Lori
October 2, 2010

Heidi -
This brings back memories - we rented an apt in Testaccio two summers ago. First, night we got there, we got to watch a playoff in the piazza for the World's Cup on a big screen with all of the local residents. We stayed about a block and half from the market. Loved Vopetti and really got to know the people in two of the local restaurants we frequented in the neighborhood.

I also remember walking to Trastevere to a wonderful bakery based on seeing it mentioned in your blog. Felt like it was a hidden secret as we would have never known it was there except for your blog.

HS: Thanks for the nice comment Lori. We went a festival in that piazza just last night! Still such a great neighborhood.

 

LEROY
October 3, 2010

This brings back memories ,,they make me want to take off on a european adventure of my own!

 

Lora
October 3, 2010

Took this salad to lunch with the girls today and they all loved it. I think you could soak the raisins in fruit juice and have a similar effect. I really loved the little pop of the sweet raisins against the other peppery/vinegary flavors.

Thanks, Heidi, for another great recipe!

 

Cindy
October 4, 2010

I made this salad yesterday with a few modifications and my husband declared it "one of the best salads I've every had!"

My alterations were as follows:

Dressing:
-1/2 and 1/2 instead of heavy cream
-about half as much olive oil
-white wine vinegar instead of white

Fruit:
-I used currants soaked for an hour in Apothic Winemaker's Blend Red (What can I say? I was in a hurry.)

It is a fabulous blent of sweet, salty, and bitter flavors with lots of crunchy goodness. Thanks for this one!

 

Alta
October 4, 2010

Wow, what a lovely, lovely slaw. I just ate and I'm hungry again for this.

 

eva
October 7, 2010

Heidi, beautiful pics of Rome! You make me miss Italy! You have been eating cacio e pepe alot? I find it too heavy for me :) and did you try the pizzeria baffetto near piazza navona? Great pizza there. Thank you for sharing this. Beautiful.

 

geyser
October 12, 2010

Beautiful images and loved this recipe, looks great and seems easy enough to make - thanks

 

K come Karolina
October 12, 2010

oh! i work just around the corner!!! via giovanni branca :D
so nice to see this photos :D
love your blog!!!

xoxo
K.
http://kcomekarolina.blogspot.com/