Crumbled goat cheese or fetaor shaved ricotta salata (optional)
If you are making the dressing, in a small bowl combine the mayonnaise, orange juice and zest, shallot, parsley, olive oil, vinegar, and mustard . Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Place a large skillet with a lid over medium-high heat and add 1 tablespoon olive oil or butter. Add the shallots and onions, season with salt and pepper and sauté for about 10 minutes until softened and slightly golden. Remove to a plate.
Return the skillet to medium heat and add the remaining tablespoon olive oil or butter. Add the haricot verts and season with salt and pepper to taste. Increase the heat to medium-high, and cook for 2 minutes, only stirring once or twice until the beans are nicely coated with the butter, and browned in a spot or two. Add 2 tablespoons of water, cover the pan and steam the veggies until they are bright green and almost cooked through, 3 minutes longer. Remove the lid, stir in the onions, and allow the rest of liquid to evaporate, while the vegetables finish cooking to your liking, 1 to 2 more minutes. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt and pepper if necessary. Serve hot or warm, either with the dressing, and/orthe cheese, or without.