When I first moved to New York, take out was a new and exciting experience. In Dallas we'd get pizza delivered... and that's about it. So coming to a city where I could get everything from Cuban to Malaysian to Salvadorian and at any time of the day... well it was just a tad overwhelming. Thanks to chowhound, menupages, yelp, etc I found some must haves, one of my favorites being Dry Sauteed String Beans at Grand Sichuan.
The beans are nicely blistered, but not burned and the pork adds some nice fatty deliciousness and also picks up the sugar, soy and of course the spice from the chilies. Over some brown rice all the textures work perfectly and even though I wouldn't call it the healthiest meal, it's fairly balanced. And it's a dish I crave over and over, throughout the seven years I've lived here. And even though I've now moved back into delivery range for Grand Sichuan, why not try to recreate this at home?
A quick google search for dry sauteed string beans brought up a plethora of recipes, so I took a little from the ones I liked. Trimming the beans was a little time consuming, but once everything got underway the cooking went fast. Having everything prepped was a must and even with the time it took to prep the beans, from start to finish it was just under 30 minutes. And even though the ground pork I used was pretty lean, next time I make this I'm definitely going to use ground turkey to make it even healthier.
1 lb. green beans- trimmed
1/4 lb. ground pork (or turkey)
2 Tbl. garlic- minced
2 Tbl ginger- minced
1 Tbl chili paste (like siracha)
1 Tbl. low sodium soy sauce
1 tsp. sugar
2 scallions- finely chopped
1 Tbl. canola oil
1/2 tsp sesame oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Brown rice to serve over
1. Heat a wok or saute pan until a drop of water evaporates in a second or 2. Add in 1/2 Tbl of the canola and a 1/4 Tbl. of the sesame and then add in the beans. Saute until the skins are blistered, about 6-8 minutes. Remove and drain over papers towels.
2. Add in the remaining oil and then the pork, garlic, ginger, and chili paste. Cook until pork separates easily and is cooked through, about 5-7 minutes. Add in the soy sauce, sugar, scallions and the beans and toss together for another 5 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper and serve over brown rice.