COLORFUL CANNELLINI BEAN SALAD
Summer’s calling and that means picnics, trips to the beach, and outdoor activities galore. Instead of stopping by the local deli for your lunch-to-go, why not prep something at home? Save some money and keep things healthy. Check and check.
When thinking of lunch options to bring with you on the road or to indulge outdoors, a bean salad is a great option. It will hold up without refrigeration and is sure to re-energize you in a hearty whole grain friendly way. You can also add whatever vegetables (or fruit) you have in your fridge that particular day. If the prepping of dried beans sounds like a nightmare to you, just go with canned beans but make sure you rinse them WELL.
I stopped by our farmers market and picked up some pretty organic radishes – white, red, and purple! They add a nice pop of color against the white beans. My secret in this dish though are the caramelized shallots. After they have a chance to steep in the oil, vinegar, lemon, and rosemary – they almost “pickle” gently. When the shallots are added to the rest of the salad, they carry the flavors in which they were steeping and disperse them beautifully to the other vegetables.
- Cannellini Beans (2 cups)
- Cucumber (1)
- Red Bell Pepper (1)
- Radishes (3-4)
- Rosemary Sprig (1)
- Shallot (1)
- Lemon (1/4)
- Olive Oil
- Balsamic Vinegar
- Salt + Pepper
- Prep the cannellini beans a day in advance by soaking them in cold water. Boil them for about 40-50 minutes the day of, drain and let cool.
- Finely slice up the shallot and place in a small pot with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, juice of the lemon wedge, and the rosemary sprig. Season with salt and let it simmer on the stove top.
- Meanwhile, dice up the red bell pepper and place into a salad bowl.
- Halve the cucumber lengthwise, remove the seeds with a spoon, cut in half again (lengthwise) and chop up into small pieces. Add to the salad bowl with the red bell pepper.
- Use a mandoline to slice up the radishes. Add to the salad bowl and toss with the red bell pepper and cucumber pieces.
- Drain the beans and add to the bowl. Toss with the vegetables, season with salt + pepper.
- When the shallots have caramelized and turned glassy, remove from the heat but let them steep for a good hour.
- When that hour is up, discard the rosemary leaf and pour the contents of the pot into the salad bowl and toss everything together.