Recipes Side Dishes Vegetables String Bean Salad with Ricotta Salata and Lemon

String Bean Salad with Ricotta Salata and Lemon

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 4

Old-fashioned green bean salad, a perennial staple at summer picnics and barbecues, gets a delicious makeover here with the addition of ricotta salata, a salty Italian sheep’s milk cheese.


  • 1/2 lb. (250 g) yellow wax beans, trimmed
  • 1/2 lb. (250 g) green beans, trimmed
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • 2 to 3 Tbs. lemon-infused olive oil or extra-virgin olive oil
  • Finely grated zest of 1/2 lemon
  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 8 fresh basil leaves, finely shredded
  • 2 Tbs. crumbled ricotta salata cheese


Place a steamer basket in a large saucepan and fill the pan with water up to but not touching the bottom of the basket. Bring the water to a boil over high heat. Add the beans to the basket, cover and steam until just crisp-tender, 4 to 5 minutes. The green beans should be bright green.

Transfer the beans to a large salad bowl. Add the tomato, sprinkle with the olive oil and lemon zest, and toss to mix. Add 1/4 tsp. salt, a small grinding of pepper, the basil ribbons and the cheese. Toss again to combine and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Rustic Italian, by Domenica Marchetti (Weldon Owen, 2011)