Green Bean Slaw Recipe

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 here in the Testaccio neighborhood of Rome - moscato-soaked raisins, arugula, perorino cheese, croutons. Plus a few travel photos.

Green Bean Slaw

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.

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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


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 minutes - Cook time: 20 minutes

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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


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.


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


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!


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!


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


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.


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!


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.


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


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...

Suzy Scragg

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.

Pam @ Best kitchen cookware

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!


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!


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!


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.


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!

Michelle @ Find Your Balance

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.


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

Heidi - apples under my bed

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!


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

The Rowdy Chowgirl

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. :)


I LOVE the first picture. I am in love with it. Absolutely stunning. HS: Thanks Claire.


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

Cathy B. @ Bright Bakes

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

Mandy - The Complete Cook Book

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


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