Monday, 24 September 2007

French Bean Salad with a Twist of Spice

Would you be surprised if i told you i only started cooking about 3-4 years ago? I only started learning how to cook because my mom kinda forced me to learn before leaving home to come to Aussie land! I never actually paid much attention but just went along and sat in the kitchen just because i was more interested in ways to distract myself and spend time chit-chatting with her *cheeky grin*. But the only thing i remember her telling me over and over again is that if you want to cook vegetables, the main ingredients to put in is mustard seeds and urad dhal(black split beans without skin).

So that's all i remembered when it came to cooking vegetables. However, after coming over to Australia, i started cooking and just absolutely loved it. My dad told me once, If you know how to cook, no matter where you are, you'll make friends.'


After discovering Sunita's blog, I came across her monthly spice event of 'Think Spice,' and I was thrilled when she announced mustard seeds being the spice of the month.

I kept thinking about what unique dish i could come up with only using mustard seeds. I didn't want to put up a normal South Indian vegetable dish as its too mundane. Instead, my sister and i decided to dish up an east meets west recipe for French Bean Salad using mustard seeds. Not to worry folks, I'm still keeping up with my quick meal theme!

This dish is soo easy, refreshing and the best part is that it has a twist of spice to it. A good side dish to go with anything that you want. And the absolute clincher is that it doesn't even have to be an Indian meal.

French Bean Salad with a Twist of Spice
Serves 4

3 cups of French Beans, cut into 4 cm pieces
1/4 cup grated carrot(optional)
1 tbs oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 green chillies, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
100g( grated coconut)
70g (1/2 cup) almonds instead pounded
1 1/2 tsp honey
1 tbs honey whole grained mustard (Master food)


1. Boil some water in a pan. Drop in French beans and return to the boil. Or what i did was i just boiled water in a kettle and poured it into a bowl with my beans and covered it for about 2 minutes. Drain the beans and rinse in cold water.
2. Set aside in mixing bowl.
3. Heat oil in a separate pan. Add mustard seeds and fry. Add onion, chillies and grated coconut. Saute for 1 minute and then add the honey. Fry till the coconut turns brown or until fragrant.
4. Combine your beans with sauted ingredients. Add grated carrot, salt, sugar and mustard. Mix well.
5. Best served cold after being refrigerated for about 30 minutes.

Not only did i use mustard seeds, i also used honey whole grained mustard in my salad. Therefore, i think i do qualify to enter Sunita's ' Think Spice, Think Mustard seed' event ;)


sunita said...

That's a great looking salad, must have tasted the same...thanks for sending it over.

daphne said...

nicely done. It's great fun playing around with spices. =)

culinaryprincess said...

Sunita and Daphne- thank you for ur compliments. Its very encouraging to try new dishes when you get good support :)

Valli said...

What an ingenious way to serve up a bean salad. I love to have dinner parties so I guess I must love to cook. Your dad is right!There's nothing better than being with the people you love over a great meal and a glass of wine...or two...

Jeena said...

Wow I love beans fantastic picture! :)

Cynthia said...

A twist of spice and everything's nice. No, I'm not a rapper :D

niva said...

i must say using the honey wholegrain mustard was a touch of genious! *grin** wonder how u came up with it.@:)

culinaryprincess said...

valli-you must be one really hardworking person! dinner parties are fun but the washing up and cleaning..hmm i don't think so :)

jenna- thanx jenna

cynthia- *LOL* you're very right!somehow most of us st stick to our roots no matter where we are!

niva- are u talking about me??? ;P