Spicy French Beans

I find that there is not a lot that one can do with French beans, especially in Indian cooking. Unless I have not discovered many magical recipes using this vegetable. I normally end up making an usili or a thoran (check my blog for details). Or add it in pasta or Chinese food. So, discovering a new recipe using French beans is always exciting for me. However, I approach any new recipe with trepidation since I have has several bad experiences where the dish did not taste as wonderful as promised. It is in this same spirit that I approached this Gujarati French beans recipe. But was pleasantly surprised to find that it indeed tasted wonderful.

Gujarati French Beans

500 gms French beans, trimmed about 1″ long
1 tbsp mustard seeds (sarson, kadugu)
4 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1 dried red chili, crushed
1/2 tsp date paste (I avoided this as I do not like a sweet tinge in my food)
Salt to taste
Freshly ground black pepper to garnish
Bring a large pot of water to boil
Add the beans and boil for 3-4 minutes
Drain and wash in cold water (you can reserve the drained water as vegetable stock for future use)
Set the beans aside
Heat a wok over medium heat and add mustard seeds and garlic
Cook till the garlic is golden brown
Add the crushed red chili
Add the beans, date paste and salt
Cook for about 8 minutes or till tender
Transfer to a serving bowl
Garnish with freshly ground black pepper
Serve hot

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