Recipes

Fresh Water Chestnuts with Green Beans, Maple Bacon & Red Onions

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Nino Salvaggio
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Serves: 4

Cultivated in China since ancient times, the Water Chestnut is the edible tuber of a water plant indigenous to Southeast Asia. The Water Chestnut’s brownish-black skin resembles that of a true chestnut, but its flesh is white, crunchy and juicy. The fresh “corms” (a sort of underground storage stem of a plant), can be peeled with your fingers and eaten much like a fresh fruit with a flavor that some say resembles coconut, apple or even macadamia nuts. Even if cooked, the chestnuts have the ability to remain crisp, which is a feature prized in the Asian cuisine.

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Ingredients

  • 3 cups Green Beans, cut to 2-3″
  • As Needed – Boiling Salted Water
  • 12 Water Chestnuts, fresh, sliced thin
  • 4 strips Nino’s Maple Bacon, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. Garlic Cloves, sliced fine
  • 1 cup Red Onion, cut julienne
  • 1/4 cup Red Bell Pepper, cut julienne
  • To Taste – Salt & Pepper

Instructions

  1. Cut off pointed end and woody base of water chestnut, then peel off the skin and immerse in cold water immediately to prevent its discoloration.
  2. In a medium sauté pan over medium heat, fry minced bacon until nearly crisp (save fat).
  3. Remove water chestnuts from the water, slice thin and add to the crisp bacon with onions, red peppers and garlic. Sauté briefly.
  4. Blanch green beans in boiling salted water for 2 minutes, remove from the water and add to the sauté mixture.
  5. Cook the entire mixture 2 to 3 minutes longer on medium high heat.
  6. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

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