In Season West Coast: Yellow Wax Beans
Yellow wax beans are just so cheerful looking aren’t they? For those unfamiliar with them and are unsure how to use them, yellow wax beans are a variety of snap or string bean although they have a more delicate flavor and a thinner skin than a regular green bean. This is because they are picked while the are still in the immature stage of their developement.
Although yellow wax beans are available year round, their peak season tends to run July to late September. However, here in California, it has apparently been pushed a little bit later than that. Thank you global warming.
Yellow Wax Beans can be used pretty interchangeably with the more traditional green beans. A bean salad seems like an obvious place to use them. Steam them and then saute with olive oil, chopped garlic, a sqeeze of lemon juice, a little of the grated lemon zest and a nice sprinkling of chopped parsley, Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper or toss them with butter and dill. These types of beans pair well with salty ingredients like bacon. They would be pretty in a salad, especially a salad niciose with a black olive vinaigrette and grilled fresh tuna. They would be great in a stir fry, try pickling them or even grill them in a cast iron grill pan.
Try to select nice, unblemished ones and to make sure they are fresh, they should snap when bent in half. They are very healthy, have no fat and are very low in calories. Store them in the refrigerator for about 4 days however opinion differs on whether or not they should be washed first.