I love anchovies. I didn’t use to love anchovies. But Spain has that effect on people. If you think you don’t like anchovies, try this recipe– it just might change your mind.
This is my famous Spanish style green beans recipe, one that has made me a bit of a Thanksgiving celebrity. See if your guests can guess the secret ingredient!
Here in Spain anchovies can go for big bucks for a tiny tin– and the expensive stuff is well worth it. But we also enjoy anchovies in a variety of recipes, and often you don’t even know they are there.
Added to sauces, dressings, and more, these little fish add a depth of flavor and umami that is hard to replicate! That’s the trick to this delicious recipe for my Spanish style green beans. I urge you to try it, and see who names the hidden ingredient first!
See also: Spain’s obsession with canned foods
Spanish Style Green Beans with Almonds & Anchovy Dressing
- 1 bag of haricot vert thin French-style green beans, rinsed and drained (generally a bag is around 1kg or 2 lbs)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil for the green beans
- Sea salt
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil for the dressing
- 3 tablespoons of sherry vinegar substitution: red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 salt-cured anchovy filets
- 1/4 cup slivered almonds
- Start by preparing the green beans. You can use fresh beans, but I usually buy a bag of frozen ones. Here in Spain I go to La Sirena, and in the US I love the ones at Trader Joes. Heat a heavy pan over medium-high, and add 2 T of olive oil. Add the green beans and sauté for about seven minutes until just cooked through, but still crunchy. Season with salt and pepper and put into a large bowl.
- Now toast the slivered almonds. Place them in layer on a dry frying pan and sauté over medium heat. Make sure to keep a close eye on them because they'll burn in a second! Remove the pan once lightly browned and fragrant.
- Now make the dressing-- I know anchovies can be scary to some people, but just try this dish. It's incredible. The anchovies add a depth of flavor that's hard to achieve. Smash the anchovies and garlic in a mortar and pestle until you have a thick paste. Whisk in the mustard and sherry vinegar, and slowly drizzle in the olive oil until everything emulsifies and the consistency looks like a dressing.
- Now add the dressing to the cooked green beans, little by little until just coated. Warm if necessary, and then place into a serving dish and decorate with the toasted almonds. Enjoy!
- This anchovy dressing is also great on green salads, broccoli and brussel sprouts.
What do you think? Will these Spanish style green beans grace your table this holiday season?