Chinese Green Beans (Szechuan Green Beans)
This popular Szechuan dish found is a staple at many Chinese restaurant buffets. Instead of chili paste, feel free to add 4 - 6 small dried red chilis if desired.
1 pound green beans
1 tablespoon bean sauce (available at Asian markets; Koon Chun is a good brand)
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
2 teaspoons Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon chopped ginger
2 scallions, chopped, white part only
1/2 teaspoon chili paste
3 tablespoons vegetable or peanut oil for stir-frying, or as needed
Wash the green beans and drain thoroughly. Trim the ends and cut on the diagonal into pieces approximately 2 inches long.
Combine the sauce ingredients and set aside.
Heat the wok on medium heat and add 2 tablespoons oil, drizzling the oil down the sides of the wok. When the oil is hot, add the beans.
Stir-fry for 7 - 10 minutes, until their skins pucker and turn brown and the green beans are tender without being mushy (I find 10 minutes works very well). Remove the beans from the wok.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in the wok on medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the chopped garlic, ginger and scallions. Stir-fry briefly for a few seconds until aromatic. Add the chili paste.
Add the sauce and the green beans. Toss the ingredients together and serve hot.
Yield: 4 Servings