Roasted Ginger Sesame Green Beans aren’t going to win any beauty contests. Let’s just get that out of the way right now. Roasted Ginger Sesame Green Beans have the dual advantage of residing firmly in the “WOW! I can’t believe how easy this is” and in the “Oh my word. I can’t stop eating these” categories, and if we’re all being perfectly honest with ourselves, that’s all that really matters, right?
Oh sure, they’re pretty good for you, too, all things considered, being a powerhouse of protein, thiamin, niacin, Vitamins B2 and B6, beta carotene (REALLY! All that beta carotene is visually disguised by the next doozie), chlorophyll, magnesium, dietary silicon, and calcium, just to name a few. Don’t let all that nutritional speak let you lose sight of the fact that Roasted Ginger Sesame Green Beans are ultimately one of the easiest and tastiest side dishes for a variety of entrées. It’s an obvious match for anything with Asian flavours (this cod, this salmon, this pork, this ground pork dish, this pork roast, this pot roast, and this turkey just to name a few.) But it’s just plain awesome with any fish (this fish, this fish, or this fish) or chicken or beef you are serving.
The truth is, that when a pan of Roasted Ginger Sesame Green Beans comes out of the oven, I have a seriously hard time keeping my fingers off of the pan. It’s a little easier when the pan is blazing hot, because Roasted Ginger Sesame Green Beans are blistered in an oven nearly as hot as you can get it for a very short amount of time. It doesn’t seem to matter though, because the aroma is so overwhelmingly enticing to me that I gladly sacrifice a couple tender finger tips to snatch them from the pan and scarf them. I tell myself it’ll be one or two, and I leave the room to enforce discipline, but before I know it, I’m back in front of the now-cooling pan conveying one garlicky, gingery, crisp tender green bean after another into my mouth like I’m a mommy bird feeding a baby. I HAVE NO CONTROL AROUND THESE. It’s all good though, because of that multitude of vitamins, minerals, and dietary glitter I listed in the paragraph above. I’m almost certain that no one would waggle a judgmental finger in my face over my consumption of an entire pound of green beans.
Well, maybe my husband would, but that’s just because at that point I will have eaten his serving, too!
- There isn’t much to see here, but let’s lay it down. You need your oven to be at least 450°F. If you can crank it to 500°F, that’s even better.
- You’ll probably want to stick with fresh whole green beans for this dish for optimal texture in the finished product, but if you absolutely cannot lay your hands on them, use whole, frozen green beans.
- There’s no need to mess up a mixing bowl. You can toss the green beans with the oil, ginger, and garlic right on the baking pan. I prefer a half sheet pan for the job.
- Don’t crowd the pan. Let those little lovelies have room to blister and roast. One layer, please, and make it a rimmed pan if you know your stuff. You’ll be giving it a shake from time to time, and this makes it much easier to do so without losing all the tasty, tasty Roasted Ginger Sesame Green Beans.
- Please don’t toss the sesame seeds with the green beans before they cook. Burnt sesame seeds are decidedly NOT tasty, and they’re quite prone to burning at those temperatures. It’s perfectly wonderful to toss them AFTER roasting, and they’ll even stick a little better that way.
- Pull the Roasted Ginger Sesame Green Beans from the oven when they’ve blistered a bit and have some blackened bits, but are still crisp tender. They’ll shrivel a little as they start cooling, but that’s okay! That’s how you know you did it right.
- 1 pound fresh green beans, ends trimmed
- 2 teaspoons canola oil or peanut oil
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 1½ teaspoons grated fresh ginger root
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
- Preheat oven to 450°F. If your oven can reach 500°F, preheat to that instead.
- Toss the green beans, canola or peanut oil, sesame oil, fresh ginger root, garlic, and salt on a rimmed baking sheet until the oil, garlic, and ginger are evenly coating the green beans. Put into the hot pan and roast for 8 to 15 minutes, shaking every three minutes or so, until it reaches desired crispness. I prefer to pull the beans when they are still crisp tender, blistered on the outside and have scattered blackened areas. While the beans are still hot, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds, toss to coat, and serve immediately.