Fresh Green Bean, Walnut, & Feta Salad

September 28, 2013
Fresh Green Bean, Walnut, and Feta Cheese Salad dressed with olive oil and fresh mint vinaigrette.  It may sound bizarre, but it's one amazingly delicious flavor combination!
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Fresh Green Bean, Walnut, & Feta Salad image


The flavor combination of this salad may sound a tad bit, well ... strange ... to some, but believe me, it's aMAZing.  The snap of fresh green beans, with the crunch of chopped walnuts, the saltiness of crumbled Feta, and refreshing zing of fresh mint pair just beautifully.  In a most surprisingly wonderful way.
My Mom is the one who first made this salad in our family.  We all immediately fell in love.  In my opinion, it's hard not to fall in love with such great flavor!

And it's pretty, too ... Don't ya think?  Just look at those bright colors!  Love it when yummy food is pretty too.  It's a nice bonus.

Fresh Green Bean, Walnut, & Feta Salad with Mint Vinaigrette image

Much of the beautiful color in this salad comes from just-barely-blanched fresh green beans.  Blanching ... basically, cooking in boiling water for a teeny tiny bit of time and then immediately dunking in ice water to stop the cooking process {called 'shocking'} ... tenderizes vegetables to the bite while maintaining their vibrant color.

I adore the crunch of blanched vegetables.  I'm much more a fan of crunchy veggies than mushy ones.

So to whip up this flavorful salad, start by trimming and cutting some fresh green beans.

Trimming fresh green beans image

Then blanch them.

To blanch, I like to prepare one side of my two-sided sink with the ice water I'll need to shock the beans, and I place the colander to drain them when they're hot on the other side.

Setting up your sink to blanch green beans image

Once the beans are cooked for their very brief time, I drain them in the colander ... and then plunge them, colander and all, in the prepared ice water on the other side of the sink.

How to blanch green beans image

Then I simply pick the colander up out of the ice water to drain the beans again, and ... done!  A very easy way to handle the blanching-and-shocking process.

Blanching fresh green beans image

Next, combine all the dressing ingredients ... including that refreshing zing of fresh mint ... in a food processor ...

How to make mint vinaigrette image

... and give it all a whirl.

Making mint vinaigrette dressing image

Pour the minted dressing over the beans, which have been mixed with walnut, Feta, and chopped red onion, and you've got yourself a beautiful bowl of one amazingly delicious salad.

Don't be afraid.  Make this.  I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.  No, I know you will.

Fresh Green Bean, Walnut, & Feta Salad with Mint Dressing Image

Green Bean, Walnut, & Feta Salad
Source:  Adapted from Cooking Light magazine
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 lbs. fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into about 2-inch pieces
  • 1 c. chopped walnuts
  • 3/4 c. diced red onion
  • 1 c. crumbled Feta cheese
  • 3/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 c. white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 c. fresh mint leaves, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
Directions
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add green beans and cook for only 3 minutes. Drain well and immediately plunge into ice water to stop the cooking process. Drain again and pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Place green beans in a large bowl. Add walnuts, red onion, and Feta; gently stir to combine.
  3. Combine olive oil, white wine vinegar, mint, garlic, salt, and pepper in the bowl of a food processor; pulse a few times to blend. Pour dressing over the bean mixture and toss. Chill for about an hour before serving.
Enjoy!


Please enjoy these other delicious salads from The Kitchen is My Playground ...

Make-Ahead Layered Salad {for a Crowd}




16 comments

  1. Love your salad variety! Thanks so much for sharing this. Of course, I am pinning! I just popped over from the Marvelous Monday Linkey. I would love it if you dropped by for a visit at http://www.kneadedcreations.com . Happy Day to you! Deb @ Kneaded Creations

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  2. This salad looks so fabulous! I so pinned! I am putting green beans on my grocery list... :)
    YUM!!!
    :)
    hugs x, Crystelle
    Crystelle Boutique

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Crystelle! You'll be so glad you got those green beans. :-)

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  3. This greenbean salad looks amazing, I'm going to try it!

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  4. You have a great blog. Amazing pics and recipes. Thanks for sharing.

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  5. 3/4 cup of olive oil? That has to be a mistake?

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  6. This looks so gorgeous. Any suggestion for a walnut substitute? I love them, but there's an allergy in the household so I have to leave them out, but I hate to lose the depth of flavor they provide.

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  7. Will try the green bean salad tonight & add asparagus & sweet potato cubes

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  8. I'm going to make this today to bring to a BBQ tonight! I'm so excited - LOVE everything you put in there, so I'm positive I'll love it. Will let ya know what I think!

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    Replies
    1. MADE IT! Delicious! I can't wait to devour it with my family tonight! Thanks for a wonderful recipe :D

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  9. wow! first time i am seeing the different varaiety of Green salad. very good admin.

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  10. I cut this recipe in half as I am the only one eating it but it is delicous!! I use 1/4 cup of olive oil and only 1/8 cup of white wine vinegar and it still comes out delicious!!

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  11. Is this a good salad to make a day ahead of time? thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Yes, this can absolutely be made a day ahead of time. The green beans do begin to darken in color a bit over time ... so I wouldn't recommend making it several days in advance. But one day is fine.

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