“Pole beans” is sort of an umbrella term—pole beans are any variety of bean that needs a trellis (or pole) to climb, including green beans and wax beans.
We like to use a mix of those two, but either one alone will work in this recipe.
There aren’t a lot of components to the dish: just spectacularly crisp summer- ripe beans, fresh garlic, lemon juice, and some Controne chili. Controne chili is extremely earthy and smoky, and we absolutely love it. It’s made from a pepper indigenous to Southern Italy and is named for Controne, a small town at the foot of the Alburni mountain range near the border of Basilicata. There’s really no equivalent and it is well worth the search, though in a pinch you could substitute crushed dried chili. The dish will still be excellent, if not quite as nuanced.
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound mixed yellow wax and green beans
½ teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste
2 garlic cloves, chopped
½ teaspoon crushed dried Controne chili or other crushed chili
Juice of 1 lemon
Freshly cracked black pepper
In a large skillet, heat 5 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat. Add the beans and the salt. Once the beans take on some color, turn the heat to low and cover; the beans should be cooked in 3 to 5 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and the garlic. Once the garlic is fragrant, stir in the chili pepper and lemon juice and toss together. Taste and add more salt if necessary, season with
black pepper, and serve.