Sichuan Beans: Date Added: 11 Nov 2009 Ingredients:

6 ounces finely-ground pork


1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
2 pinches freshly-ground white pepper
2 cups groundnut/peanut oil
1 pound green beans, French beans -- topped and tailed
or Chinese yardlong (snake) beans -- snapped 4" lengths
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon dried shrimp (har mai) -- soaked 1 hour in
warm water, drained and minced
3 garlic cloves -- crushed
1 1/2 tablespoons preserved Sichuan vegetable (jar choi)
2 teaspoons chili bean paste
1 red chili pepper -- finely chopped,
for garnish

Cooking Instructions:

Place the ground pork in a bowl, add all of the marinade ingredients and mix well. Set aside.

Heat the groundnut oil in a wok until moderately hot. Deep-fry the beans in 3 batches until the skins begin to wrinkle and the beans are softened (about 3 minutes). Remove and drain well. Pour off most of the oil from the wok, leaving about 1 tablespoon behind.

Heat the remaining groundnut oil. Add the pork and quickly stir-fry over high heat with the salt, dried shrimp, garlic, preserved Sichuan vegetable, and chili bean paste. Stir-fry until the meat changes color from pink to white, about 2 minutes. Return the beans to the wok and toss until well combined and heated through. Serve, either hot or cold, garnished with the chopped red chili pepper.

This recipe yields 6 servings.

Comments: This unusual-shaped bean is an ancient Chinese vegetable. It is a long (15-inch), thin, round bean, olive green in color with a "meatier" softer texture and stronger flavor than the green bean. The southern Chinese eat the young bean whole or simply snapped in half. The northerners use the vegetable dried.


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