Summer Green Beans w/ Almond Pesto

I am calling this post "Summer Green Beans" because I am picking my home-grown beans all summer....but of course, feel free to make this in the winter!

This is a great side dish and can be made hours ahead and left out at room temp, so great for parties.

I am sure it is delicious with BBQ foods, however, we ate it with scrambled eggs......don't ask.

I sauteed my nuts in 1 tbsp of butter to toast them up, and I loved the little extra flavor of butter and oil released from the nuts. Try it.

Also, we loved having the leftover pesto for toasts the next day.

Summer Green Beans w/ Almond Pesto (adapted from Smitten Kitchen):

2 pounds green beans, I used green, yellow and purple
1 cup almonds, toasted and cooled (I sauteed my nuts in butter!)
1/3 cup grated parmesan or aged pecorino cheese
1 small garlic clove, peeled and crushed
leaves from a sprig or two of thyme
pinch of red pepper flakes, to taste
1/4 teaspoon coarse sea or kosher salt
1-2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
1/3 cup olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

In food processor, grind almonds, cheese, garlic, thyme, pepper and salt to a coarse paste. Add vinegar, and pulse again. Stir in oil and adjust seasonings to taste. Pesto can be made a day ahead and kept covered in the fridge.

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Trim green beans and cook beans in boiling water until crisp tender, about 3 to 4 minutes for regular green beans or 2 to 3 minutes for the skinnier “haricot vert” type. Plunge in an ice water bath to fully cool. Drain and pat dry.

Toss the cooled beans w/ the pesto and drizzle with some more olive oil just before serving.

I served with fresh picked sun gold cherry tomatoes and thyme flowers.

Loved this veggie side dish!