Long beans were one of the first new-to-me items I remember buying at a farmers market many moons ago. I was instantly drawn in by their snake-like appearance. Though they taste very similar to green beans, they retain their firmness and crunch a bit more when cooked. For this bunch of long beans I decided to go with a steamy bath in a flavorful coconut broth. After cooking the coconut milk will thicken and turn into a gorgeous, flavorful gravy.
1 cup full-fat (canned) coconut milk
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger root
1-2 hot chiles, cut in half lengthwise (remove seeds if you want less heat)
2 smashed garlic cloves
1 tsp rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1 tsp coconut sugar or brown sugar
½ lb long beans (you can cut them into bite-sized pieces or leave them long)
Sea salt to taste (about ½ to ¾ tsp)
Steamed rice to serve (optional)
Chopped toasted cashews to serve (optional)
Add the coconut milk, ginger, chiles, garlic, vinegar, and coconut sugar to a large pot set over medium heat. Allow the mixture to simmer for 5 minutes, then add the beans and your salt. Cover the pot with a lid and let the beans cook for 7-10 minutes or until they are tender. You can serve them as is or over a bed of steamed rice with a sprinkling of toasted cashews. Makes about 4 side servings.
Recipe and Images by Courtney West @Sweetmiscellany