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Portuguese Deep-Fried Green Beans ~ Peixinhos da Horta

Five Portuguese deep-fried green beans standing in a white cup.
Portuguese deep-fried green beans are lightly battered and fried until crisp. The beans are par-boiled so they're cooked to perfection by the time the coating is golden brown. They disappear as fast as you can serve 'em.
David Leite

Prep 30 mins
Cook 15 mins
Total 45 mins
Appetizer
Portuguese
8 servings
140 kcal

Equipment

  • Deep-fry or candy or instant-read thermometer

Ingredients 

  • 1 pound green beans trimmed
  • About 4 cups peanut oil for frying
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions 

  • Heat the oven to the lowest setting possible. [Editor's Note: On some ovens this is the "warm" setting, while on others it's a temperature of 135°F (57°C).] Place a wire rack on a rimmed baking sheet and slide it in the oven.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Fill a large bowl halfway with ice water. Add the beans to the pot of boiling water and cook until almost tender but still slightly crisp, about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, drain the beans and drop them into the ice water to stop the cooking. Drain the beans again, move them to paper towel-lined plates, and pat them completely dry.
  • Heat the oil in a deep fryer or a large saucepan over medium-high heat to 350°F (175°C).
  • Combine the flour, water, eggs, baking powder, salt and pepper in a large bowl and whisk until a smooth batter forms. Dip about a dozen beans at a time into the batter and them remove them, using tongs or your fingertips, and shaking off any excess batter. Add the beans to the hot oil and fry until golden brown, about 4 minutes. 
  • Using a slotted spoon, transfer the beans to paper towels to drain for a few moments. Sprinkle the deep-fried green beans with salt and then carefully strew the greens beans on the wire rack in the oven to keep warm. Repeat the dipping and frying with the remaining green beans and batter. Serve whatever beans haven't been snatched up by spouses, kids, in-laws, or neighbors with good noses immediately.