Balinese green bean urap
A throwback dish featuring floral long pepper and grassy green peppercorns, from acclaimed food writer Eleanor Ford.
Serves 4 (or more as a side)
400g (14oz) green beans
200g (4 cups) baby spinach leaves
4 tablespoons neutral oil
6 small shallots, sliced
4 garlic cloves, sliced
100g (1 cup) grated coconut or rehydrated desiccated coconut
1 sprig fresh green peppercorns (2 teaspoons)
1 lime leaf, deveined and finely sliced
Juice and zest of ½ a lime
For the spice paste
6 garlic cloves, peeled
6 shallots, peeled
2cm (¾ inch) ginger, peeled
2cm (¾ inch) galangal, skin scrubbed (2 teaspoons grated)
2cm (¾ inch) fresh turmeric, peeled, or ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
2 bird’s eye chillies
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 long pepper or ½ teaspoon black peppercorns, crushed
Grating of nutmeg
1 In salted water, boil the beans for 2–3 minutes until tender-crisp. Put the spinach leaves in the colander and pour the beans and their boiling water over to drain, wilting the leaves in the process. Toss with a spoon and squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
2 Heat a wok or small frying pan, add 2 tablespoons of the oil and fry the sliced shallots and garlic until pale-golden. Drain on kitchen paper.
3 Make the spice paste. Roughly chop all the ingredients and grind to a paste in a food processor, adding a good splash of water. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in the wok or pan and fry the paste, stirring often, for 5–10 minutes until sweetly fragrant, the water has cooked away and the oil is beginning to separate.
4 In a large bowl, mix the grated coconut with the spice paste to make a sunny-coloured rubble. Season with salt. Add the other elements: the green beans, spinach, fried garlic and shallot, green peppercorns and lime leaf.
5 Add the lime zest and juice and use your hands to toss and rub everything together. Serve at room temperature.