Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Recipe #56 - Stirring the Pot: Tempura Green Beans with Chile, Garlic & Sesame Aioli

I can't even tell you how many times I bought the green beans for this recipe and then ended up using them for something else. I lost track. I wanted to make them while I could still find fresh green beans, yet I was afraid I'd love them too much to stop eating them. I was right! Tyler's Tempura Green Beans with Sesame Aoili are absolutely fantastic. I told myself that I would only eat 5 of them. Yeah, right! One bite of that green bean in a light, crispy, crunchy coating sent me over the edge. Scattered with crispy bits of garlic, ginger, and chile these green beans are beyond fantastic dipped in the sesame aioli. This appetizer is sure to be a hit!

Tempura Green Beans with Chile, Garlic, and Sesame Aioli
Adapted from Stirring the Pot
Serves 2-4
Time: 35 minutes
1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
2 teaspoons minced ginger
1 teaspoon minced red chile (I used one cayenne pepper)
1/2 cup store-bought mayo
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Tempura Green Beans
1 bunch green beans (about 1lb), root-end trimmed (1 pound usually equals 2 handfuls)
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 tablespoons baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup club soda, chilled
vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Kosher salt
1 lime, cut into wedges, for garnish
1/4 bunch fresh cilantro (about 4 sprigs), for garnish

For the aioli, heat sesame oil in a small pan over low heat. Add ginger, garlic, and chile and saute until fragrant and crispy. Drain ginger, garlic and chile and set aside, reserving the oil.

In a blender combine mayo, sour cream, and the reserved sesame oil. Add lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Puree until smooth. Set aioli aside.

For the Tempura Green Beans, in a large bowl combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and the 1 teaspoon salt. Make a well in the center and add yolk. Gradually whisk in club soda, slowly working your way out from the center to form a smooth batter.

Pour 2-3 inches oil into a large heavy pot and heat to 375F. Dip green beans into batter, shake off excess, and fry a few at a time for 4-5 minutes, until golden and puffy. Drain on paper towels; sprinkle with crispy fried ginger, garlic, and chile. Garnish with lime wedges and cilantro and serve with Aioli.

Notes/Results: These were a huge hit and everyone loved them. The green beans remained somewhat firm, yet tender, and the tempura batter was extremely light and crispy. At times sesame oil can be a bit strong and I was concerned that the aioli would be overpowering, but that was not that case at all. It was a wonderful accompaniment to the beans. The crispy bits of chile, garlic, and ginger really added to the flavor of the dish. We kept trying to sprinkle those bits over our beans and finally decided to add the crispy bits to the aioli so that we wouldn't miss out on the flavor. A total hit all around. I would make these again when I wanted to splurge.


  1. These do look delicious and love the sauce - I love the aroma of sesame oil - so know this will be on our dinner plates soon. I love your variety of foods and that you review each recipe.

  2. I have been wanting to try these for ages! And, since I am hosting my book club next weekend, and cooking with an asian theme - these just might have to be on the menu.

  3. I adore tempura (and the indian version called pakora), but i dont make it because I have a fear of deep frying.
    *kisses* HH

  4. I most definitely need to be your neighbor. I will gladly supply the cocktails if you could supply some of your great food.

    Another great recipe!

  5. Wow - these beans rock. I can only imagine what rave reviews you must have gotten.

  6. this looks so delicious! I'm bookmarking this for when my sister comes to visit; she pretty much only eats vegetables when they're fried.

  7. don't think J knows what Halloween is yet but likes the decor we are taking her to ride a spooky steam train at the NC transportation museum :-0 oh and love tempura

  8. I knew you would love them! I made them back in TFF and thought they were very tasty. Yum! ☺

  9. Oh man - I have to avoid these, they sound (and look) way, way too good!!!!

  10. Wow, these beans sound and look exceptionally good! I've never had tempura beans before and these look awfully tempting. I might have to get over my frying fear and make those! Don't you just love Tyler Florence?

  11. I do this all this time. Buy something and then never get the actual recipe made. Oh well. These beans look terrific and that aoli sounds like the perfect choice for dipping!

  12. I remember when we were doing TFF a few people made them (some even branching out to other veggies). Like you, I know I couldn't just "eat one" (or five). And the aioli dip; WOW!

  13. I have a fear of deep frying too but I would love to make these. I love sesame oil. Sometimes I take the top off my sesame oil just to sniff it, lol. That probably makes me really weird (I do the same to vanilla extract). These would make a great snack while watching Amazing Race.

  14. I adore tempura and by virtue of that fact alone, I know that I would not be able to stop until the whole batch was gone! Delicious.

  15. Oh my, that looks just wonderful! I love green beans and this is one of the most creative ways I've seen of fixing them up!

  16. Don't you wish you would've tried them sooner?! Crispy ginger, garlic, and chile all sound like winners to me.

  17. Sounds like a fun way to eat your veggies! I've been meaning to try making aioli but just haven't. I think you finally gave me the push I needed.

  18. You would have to physically remove me from the table. I would be nuts over these. My daughter would love the beans but I would be a fan of the aioli as well.

  19. I made these before so I understand how addicting they are! I think they are one of my favorite recipes from Tyler.

  20. Ooo these do sound great--I am pretty sure I wouldn't be able to stop at a few either!! Perfect recipe for the upcoming holiday season..thanks for sharing! :-)

  21. Oh, puhleeez - forget appetizer - I would just eat the whole plate of these (what - no, I'm not sharing) and call it dinner. These look divine - right now I have fresh beans, sugar snaps and snowpeas in my fridge - I think they'd all work with this treatment, so that could be Sunday night supper sorted!!
    Sue :-)

  22. These beauties are riveting, Kim! I had to copy this to my "to try soon" queue before I even commented. The dipping sauce rocks but I might have to sneak in some sriracha with it.

    Exceptional post!

  23. I am afraid to make these as I can never stop eating the ones at PF Chang's. ;-) These look really delicious and that sauce looks pretty darn incredible too.

  24. Oh missed you posting this, this is yet another recipe to try! Like the idea of making green beans more exciting, this looks just like something id love to eat now actually, im starving. lol.


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