Updated: Mar 23
This is a version of a very old Creole green bean dish. Pwa Vet comes from the Haitian “Kreyol” word for Green Beans. The French Influences likely spurred the use of brown mustard. Peanuts have been a common small crop in Louisiana for generations, since both the peanut, and the vine (used for hay) are good sources of food and nutrition. This is a great alternative to your standard green bean casserole. If you like, you can even add fried onions to this as a garnish. Either way, it’s one of my favorites as a side dish or salad.
What You Will Need:
2 lbs small Red Potatoes (see note)
2 lbs fresh Green Beans or Hericot Vert
1/4 cup Creole Mustard or any Spicy Brown Mustard
3 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 cup Olive Oil
1/4 cup Grapeseed Oil or Canola Oil
1/2 Medium Red Onion, Sliced Very Thin
2 cups Shelled Peanuts, Chopped
Kosher Salt and Pepper to Taste
Heat oven to 375. Place peanuts on a baking tray and toast in oven for 10-15 minutes until they are fragrant and beginning to brown. Stir occasionally. Remove from oven and let cool.
In a large pot, heat enough water to cook green beans and then boil potatoes. Bring water to a boil, and season well with salt. The water should taste like the sea.
Trim the stem off of the green beans. If you prefer not to serve whole green beans, you can cut them to your preferred size at this point. I prefer mine cut in half, and I cut them on a strong angle. If using Hericot Vert, the smaller French variety of green beans, I don’t cut them at all.
Prepare a large bowl of ice and water. It should have more ice than water. You will use this to stop your green beans from cooking.
Place small batches of green beans in the boiling water and cook for several minutes, until they are just cooked through, but still have a nice bite to them. Don’t let them get too soft. Once they’re cooked through, use a strainer to transfer the green beans to the ice water to stop them from cooking any further. DON’T DUMP YOUR WATER OUT. It’s important to cook in small batches, because too much green beans can bring your water temp down too much and they won’t cook properly. After several minutes in the ice water, remove them to a tray with a couple paper towels underneath.
Once all of your beans are cooked, place the potatoes in the water, and once it boils again, turn the water down to a simmer. Cook them until they are tender in the center. You can test them by poking the potato with a small knife. If it goes all the way into the center of the potato very easily, and then slides out easily, your taters are done!
Remove your potatoes from the water and place on a tray to cool at room temp.
Once your potatoes are cool, you can cut them into the size you like. Since red potatoes come in so many sizes, it’s up to you. I usually quarter them so they’re easy to eat with just a fork, and you don’t need a knife.
Place all your ingredients in a large mixing bowl, and toss together. Allow this mixture to sit for an hour before serving. Season with Salt and Pepper to taste
Red Potatoes are my favorite for this dish, but Yukon Gold, Fingerling or other small waxy potato will work just the same. If they are larger than a baseball, you should cut them in half before cooking. It will cook them more evenly, and reduce your cook time.
If your boiling water was salty enough, you shouldn’t have to season it too much. Perhaps just a little fresh cracked black pepper.
This dish is best served slightly chilled. You can serve it immediately after mixing, but the flavors come together better if they have a little time to marry. This will still taste delicious up the following day, but the green beans will start to turn brown because of the vinegar and mustard. If you don’t want to make so much at once, you can still cook the whole batch of veggies, but just marinate it in smaller amounts, enough to last you a day or two.