Marvellous Green Bean & Asparagus Salad w Orange Blossom

PREP TIME: 25mins


Mr Yotam at Ottolenghi is nothing short of a salad master and this is my adaption of a classic. Crunchy greens, perfum’y’ orange blossom dressing & toasted hazelnuts, we can’t think of a more marvellous way to get your greens in for the day.

Serving Suggestion:

Serves 6

Everything can be made well in advance and stored in the fridge. Remember to add the dressing only once you are serving and tossing a salad is as important as the salad itself to make sure all the flavours mix together.

What you'll need:

large bowl with cold water filled generously with ice (and more)


  • 400g fine green beans
  • 300g mange tout or sugar snaps
  • 200g asaparagus
  • 70g skinned hazelnuts
  • 1 tablespoon black sesame or poppy seeds (opt)


  • 1 tspn orange blossom *
  • juice of 1 orange (and zest)
  • 1/2 garlic clove minced (opt)
  • salt
  • 6 tbspn olive oil or hazelnut oil
  • black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 200c
  2. Wash your beans. If using fine green beans chances are that they are already topped, I like to keep the fine tail on. I prefer to prep my mangetout or sugarsnaps peas after blanching. Trim the woody base of a the asparagus. I normally gently peel a few cm off all around the base of the asparagus (see pic).
  3. ESSENTIAL COOKING SKILL: Blanch & Refresh* Bring plenty of unsalted water to the boil in a large saucepan * plunge beans first (not mangetout) into the water, tasting after a few minutes, we are still looking for a crunch, remove with a slotted spoon and plunge into the ice water.  Repeat the above process with the asparagus (+- 2 minutes) and the mangetout but blanch only for 1 minute. Remove all your veggies from the ice water and dry.
  4. To prep the mangetout top and tail the mangetout and remove the string on the side.
  5. While the beans are cooking, scatter the hazelnuts over a baking tray and roast in the oven for 10minutes * leave to cool
  6. Using a sharp veggie knife remove the zest from the orange in strips always trying to avoid the bitter white pith. Slice each piece of zest into very thin strips. (if you have a citrus zester, you could use this instead*)
  7. For the dressing, add all the ingredients together in a glass jar and give it a good shake
  8. To assemble the dish, mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, toss gently, add the dressing, taste and adjust the seasoning, sprinkle on the hazelnuts and sesame seeds and finish off with some extra zested lemon or more orange zest.

Kitchen Notes:

ESSENTIAL COOKING SKILL: Blanch & Refresh – see here

ESSENTIAL COOKING SKILL: Roasting nuts – see here 

A citrus zester is a very handy kitchen tool, here, I add my citrus strips to salads, curries and fruit salads.

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