You can use onions in a pinch, but shallots have a more mellow flavor. I used water which is fine but the broth will add more flavor to the beans. Personally I prefer to just taste the bean, and not broth, so I stick to water. If you make your own broth or are trying to entice picky eaters to consume their greens, broth is a nice touch.
Toasted Sesame Seeds make everything better. I believe if I were to sprinkle them on a bitchy person, their personality would instantly improve. Though that is probably not the case, given the reality in my head and actual reality often disagree.
Regardless, make these beans. They look great, are wicked easy and will go with almost everything.
Sesame Green Beans
1 pound green beans, ends trimmed
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
2-3 shallots, minced
3/4 cup vegetable broth (or water)
Salt and Pepper
1. Toast sesame seeds in a skillet on medium heat until golden brown, 2-4 minutes. Watch closely, they burn easily. Set sesame seeds aside.
2. In a large skillet heat oil on medium heat until shimmering. Add shallots and cook until golden, about 5 minutes. Add beans and broth. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally until the beans are tender and bright green. This will take about 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat and toss with toasted sesame seeds. Season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve immediately.