Green bean salad-2

We’re thrilled this week to introduce Nealey Dozier of the food blog, Dixie Caviar. Nealey is always cookin’ up fantastic recipes, and we’re excited to bring you a slew of them this week!  

The classic combination of green beans, feta, and mint is nothing groundbreaking, but there’s a reason this summer favorite has withstood the tests of time. Among a sea of mayonnaise-y side dishes and sour cream-laden salads, the bright, crisp flavors of this tangy salad are like a breath of fresh air. It’s perfect for a potluck because it pairs with virtually anything — fish, chicken, burgers, you name it.

It’s worth noting,  the difference between a good one and a great one is quality ingredients. Use the best olive oil and red wine vinegar you can get your hands on. And don’t skimp on wimpy feta, either. A creamy sheep’s milk variety is worth seeking out.

Green Bean Salad with Feta and Mint
Author: 
Serves: 4 - 6
 
Don’t be afraid to play with the flavors in this salad: lemon juice can stand in for red wine vinegar, and fresh oregano pairs nicely alongside mint. Consider adding a hint of Dijon for subtle heat, or agave for a little something sweet. Toasted walnuts or pecans add a welcome crunch.
Ingredients
  • 1 pound trimmed green beans
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons good-quality red wine vinegar, or to taste
  • 1 large garlic clove, finely minced
  • ½ cup mint leaves, finely chopped
  • ½ small red onion, thinly sliced into half moons
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 ounces feta, crumbled into large pieces (l prefer sheep’s milk)
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the beans and cook until bright green and crisp-tender, or until desired doneness is reached, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain and transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Strain well.
  2. In a large serving bowl, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper. Whisk in the mint leaves. Add the green beans and red onions to the vinaigrette and toss to combine. Let marinate for at least one hour before serving to allow flavors to marry. (Can be made 1 day in advance.) Taste and adjust oil, vinegar, salt and pepper as needed. Bring to room temperature for at least 15 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with crumbled feta right before serving.

Nealey received the following Ballard Designs products to use in her post. Her opinions are her own:

Find more of Nealey’s delicious recipes on her blog, Dixie Caviar, or browse more recipe ideas on How to Decorate.