Crisp and tender young green beans are the key to this side dish. If you can get them from your farmers market, even better! Serve this tangy and crisp salad with BBQ, grilled meats or with a vegetarian meal. For even more fun, encourage people to eat the green beans with their fingers.
Trim the green beans.
Fill a large bowl with ice and water. This is where the green beans will go once they are blanched.
Bring a large pot of water to boil and add 1 tablespoon of salt. When the water is boiling, add the beans and cook for 1 minute exactly. Time this carefully as you want the beans to be crisp and tender.
Drain the beans into a colander and then plunge the green beans into the ice bath. Leave them there until they are completely cool.
Drain the beans again and shake the water off. Place them on a kitchen towel and then dry them with a few paper towels. Put them in the bowl you used to cool them off.
In a small bowl, whisk together the mustard and vinegar and then add the minced shallot, along with the 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Blend and then slowly begin to drizzle in the olive oil until it emulsifies.
Add enough vinaigrette with the green beans and toss well to combine. Reserve any leftover vinaigrette for another use. Taste and adjust seasoning, if needed.
If this dish will not be served immediately, place it in the refrigerator to chill. When ready to serve, taste, toss and you may need to add a bit more vinaigrette and salt.