I have the biggest salt tooth on the planet. These oven-baked green bean “fries” will satisfy any craving for something salty, crunchy, and junk food-y, but they’re secretly healthy. The breading is light, crispy, and browns in the oven without frying. This will save you from fatness and from cleaning up a hot oil explosion. Home frying is dangerous, people. But the real kicker is the dipping sauce. I can’t eat breaded foods without ranch, and thinning it out with some yogurt saves me some guilt. Plus, spicy ranch is one of the south’s Greatest Gifts.
for the dipping sauce:
1/4 cup prepared Ranch dressing
1/4 cup plain lowfat yogurt
1/8 teaspoon hot red pepper
1/8 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon finely chopped green onion (about one medium)
dash garlic powder
Mix all ingredients in a small bowl. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. This stuff would also be divine on sandwiches.
Tip: Make the dipping sauce first so the flavors have time to develop. Also, these fries beg to be eaten immediately and you won’t want to bother with mixing up some sauce.
for the fries:
1 bunch fresh green beans
1 tablespoon water
1/2 cup packaged bread crumbs, seasoned or plain
optional but tasty: 1 heaping tablespoon grated parmesan cheese
Rinse your green beans and trim off the ends. If they’re fresh, you should be able to snap the ends off easily with your fingers. If you forgot about the delicious green beans lurking in your veggie crisper, use a knife. Cut any extra long beans in half. You want them to be fairly uniform in size.
In a small bowl, beat the egg and water. Spread the bread crumbs on a plate. If you are using plain bread crumbs, season generously with salt and pepper. Seasoned/Italian style bread crumbs will already be quite salty. Cover a cookie sheet with tin foil, the spread generously with olive oil.
Dip the green beans first in the beaten egg, then dredge in bread crumbs. Arrange breaded green beans on the oiled cookie sheet. Make sure none of the green beans touch; they need space for the coating to get crispy. If they don’t fit in one layer, bake them in batches.
Bake in a preheated 450° oven for 10 minutes. Shuffle the fries around with tongs and bake 10 minutes more, or until golden brown.
Serve hot with the spicy ranch.
FYI, these are sooo good. I just ate half a pound of green beans. Enough said.