A number of years ago for Christmas, my family purchased a cooking class voucher for me. I could view that as a plea from them that I improve my cooking skills, but I take the positive view on that event by thinking that my family knows of my love for cooking and thought it would be interesting to me. I looked though the catalog and settled on a knife skills class.
I was (and am) envious of those chefs that can quickly slice or chop nice even pieces. I can get it done, but not to the chop-chop-chop-chop speed. I was more like slice….slice….slice. I attended the class and it was a good primer on different knives, care for knives, how to properly hold the knife and the best ways to chop.
To hold the knife, I learned to pinch the top of the blade right before the hilt with my index finger and thumb, letting the rest of the fingers wrap around the handle. To chop, create a “wall” with the second part of your fingers on your other hand (curl your fingers in) and move your knife up and down against that wall.
I proceeded to go home and tell them all about what I learned. The next day, using the wall, I chopped away. On my second item my thumb forgot to curl and SLICE – right into the tip of my thumb. So much for cooking classes!
The best part of this is the carmelized onions.
I used a mandoline to cut this onion thin. And I still have the tips of all my fingers!
Cooking the beans.
Toasting the almonds.
Carmelizing the onions.
A great side.
Green Beans with Caramelized Onions and Almonds
Prep Time: 0 hours 15 minutes | Cook Time: 0 hours 40 minutes | Makes: 6 to 8 servings | Difficulty: Easy
- Kosher salt
- 3 pounds green beans, trimmed of stem end
- 1/2 cup skin on sliced almonds
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 large onions, sliced thin
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
- Freshly ground black pepper
Fill a large high sided skillet with some water, adding enough to be just shy of the rim of the pan by about 1 inch. Place over high heat and bring up to boil; add a big pinch of salt and the green beans. Cook for about 5 minutes, the beans should still be crisp. Drain the beans and then run them under some cold water to stop them from cooking. Reserve the beans while you start the onions.Return the skillet you cooked the beans in to the cook top over medium heat. Add the almonds and toast stirring every now and then until golden, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove the almonds from the skillet and reserve. Return the skillet to the heat and add the butter and olive oil and heat until the butter has melted. Add the onions, season with salt and pepper, and cook stirring frequently until the onions caramelize, 20 to 25 minutes. Add the thyme, and cook for another 5 minutes. Add the cooked cooled green beans and almonds, and stir well to combine. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.