Ingredient Spotlight Haricot Vert Beans
Haricot Vert is French for green beans. Haricot means beans and Vert means green. French green beans are longer and thinner than most American varieties. They are also more tender and have a more complex flavor. They are interchangeable with American green beans which are also called string beans or snap beans.
When you’re in the supermarket and looking to buy some green beans, you’re often presented with two options: green beans, and usually right next to them, haricots verts, sometimes called French beans. What’s the difference between the two? The answer? Not very much. In fact, haricots verts just means “green beans” in French.
There are two main differences, though: haricots verts tend to be skinnier than traditional green beans, and are also more expensive. They’re actually bred that way: not only are they thinner, they’re also more tender and flavorful than comparably sized traditional green beans. They’re also younger than traditional green beans; if you were to pick regular old green beans at the same age at which haricots verts are harvested, they’d be missing a lot of that “beany” flavor. In France, all green beans are called haricots verts; the skinnier, pricier ones are called haricots verts filets extra-fins.