Photo by: Colin Campbell

French beans with shiitake mushrooms & nutmeg

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300g french beans, topped
75ml olive oil
1 large onion, roughly chopped
Salt and black pepper
1 garlic clove, crushed
300g shiitake mushrooms, sliced
1 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
½ bunch chervil, chopped

Use any combination of green beans, in addition to or instead of french beans, to prepare this side dish which goes well with just about everything. Serves four.


Fill a medium saucepan with plenty of unsalted water and bring to a boil. Drop in the beans and blanch for four minutes. Drain, refresh and set aside in a sieve to dry completely.

Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan. Add the onion and half a teaspoon of salt, and sauté over a high heat for about a minute, stirring the whole time. Reduce heat to low and cook for five minutes more, stirring occasionally. You want the onions soft, sweet and just turning golden brown. Add remaining oil, garlic, mushrooms, nutmeg and pepper; cook on medium heat for another four minutes, until the mushrooms are golden. Remove from the heat and mix in the beans. Season to taste. Pile on a serving dish and sprinkle with chervil. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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