Oh man, I love this super-fast and simple recipe. It's as junky as whatever your favorite greasy take-out is, and it's a great way to to use green beans that are slightly (ahem) past their prime. It makes a total mess out of your stove, though. Sorry. It's worth it.
Szechuan-Style Charred Green Beans
1 pound green beans, trimmed
4 teaspoons fresh grated ginger
4 teaspoons chili-garlic sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
2 teaspoons packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons peanut oil
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook beans until bright green and crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Drain and dry well with a kitchen towel.
Whisk together the ingredients for the sauce: ginger, chili-garlic sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, and brown sugar.
Heat the peanut oil in a large, deep skillet over high heat. Cook the green beans, stirring occasionally, until they begin to blister and develop some charred spots. Remove from heat and allow to sit for a minute or two to avoid an explosive mess, and then stir in the sauce. Serve as a side or with rice and black tea and pepper tofu!