Green Beans with Apricots and Serrano Ham

By Amanda Hesser
June 3, 2011
10 Comments


Author Notes: I had this strange and bewitching little salad at Jaleo, a Spanish restaurant that’s part of Jose Andres's Washington D.C. empire. There are no earth-shattering techniques or unusual ingredients involved. Just some dried apricots plumped with sherry and Serrano ham cut into confetti-like cubes. After blanching the haricots verts you want to keep them warm, and toss them quickly with the ham and warm apricots. The heat of the beans should warm the fat in the ham so it helps flavor the salad. Simple dishes are all about this kind of detail.
Amanda Hesser

Serves: 4
Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 5 min

Ingredients

  • 1 pinch salt, to taste
  • 6 dried apricots (or fresh, sweet ones)
  • 1/2 cup fino sherry (or whatever sherry you can find; a sweet one will work, too)
  • 1/3 cup small green grapes
  • 1/3 Granny Smith apple, skin on
  • 1 1/8-inch-thick slice Serrano ham or prosciutto (about 1.5 ounces)
  • 1 tablespoon sliced chives
  • 3/4 pound haricots verts or thin green beans, topped but not tailed
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar, more to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Directions

  1. Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, place the apricots in a bowl and pour over the sherry and 1/2 cup boiling water (yes, you can take it from the pot of boiling water!). Let the apricots sit and plump while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
  2. Thinly slice the grapes. Cut the apple into 1/8-inch cubes. Do the same with the Serrano ham. Drain the apricots, and cut each of them into 6 pieces.
  3. Add the haricots verts to the boiling water and cook until tender but still crisp in the center, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain (do not run under cold water) and transfer to a large bowl – or just add back to the empty and still-warm pot. Sprinkle in the apricots, grapes, apple, ham, chives, 1 tablespoon vinegar, and the olive oil. Toss well using your hands or two large spoons. Taste and add more vinegar and salt as needed. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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Reviews (10) Questions (2)

10 Comments

loricastlepoole September 25, 2011
Delicious! We ate this at Jaleo's last night and I just made your recipe. So yummy! I used fig infused vinegar instead of sherry vinegar, and it was equally delicious. Thanks fo much for sharing.
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. September 25, 2011
That sounds lovely! Glad you liked it.
 
MaryDD August 15, 2011
Thank you to those that replied to my questions last week, I didnt add the hot water to my fresh apricots and the salad turned out great! The flavors together are unexpected but sweet and savory!
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. August 15, 2011
Thanks for the report back!
 
Spanishfoodie July 11, 2011
Yummy recipe!!! You can buy authentic Jamon Serrano at rapososgourmet.com or through their Amazon Store at the best prices, also excellent customer service 99%!!!
 
EmilyC June 23, 2011
"Bewitching" is right. I made this the other night for company, and everyone kept going back for more. Thanks for the recipe!
 
lacerise June 15, 2011
Made this last week and, though a bit labor-intensive for a week night, we really enjoyed it. I have to say, tho, that it was even better the next day at lunch. The flavors improve over time. I'll be making this again, maybe this time on a weekend - for guests. Thanks for this, Amanda.
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. June 15, 2011
Didn't know this because we ate it all on the first day -- thanks so much for your note.
 
Sam1148 June 14, 2011
I did this tonight. I had to sub prosciutto ham tho..and used fresh apricots. <br />WOW..very very, good. It's a keeper.
 
arielleclementine June 11, 2011
We had this the other day and loved it! Perfectly balanced- loved the sherry-soaked apricots. We had it with a Spanish tortilla- good times :) thanks for the recipe!