Mixed Bean Salad with Feta, Sun Dried Tomatoes, Green Beans, Carrots and Peppers….

The name doesn’t say it all. It says some of it. But I didn’t want to be ridiculous.

For those days where you want to eat a large plate of something but you want it to be super duper healthy but also satisfying and delicious. This is a dish I make… that said it was inspired by a couple salads I used to eat frequently at two establishments I worked at when I was in my “salad days” (terrible mom joke). The salads themselves both had beans and greens and peppers and carrots and feta. But the dressings were totally different and I have added some other goodies in here which I think take it to another level of tastiness. I gorged myself on this tonight. Ate a SUMO-size portion. And I feel like I ran a marathon. Perhaps it was the amount of time it took to chew that many vegetables. It might be rabbit food but it fed a very hungry man that just sat down after an evening run!

Recipe:

  • Salad greens of your choice washed and spun dry
  • Carrots julienned
  • Yellow pepper diced or julienned
  • Red pepper diced or julienned
  • Green beans trimmed and cut into bit size pieces and blanched for a minute or so in boiling water
  • Scallions cleaned and sliced
  • Feta or goat cheese crumbled
  • Hash browns (can make from scratch or use frozen –  cook in olive oil / season with chili flakes, garlic powder and rosemary – once already half way cooked to prevent burning)
  • Mixed beans with sun dried tomatoes (see recipe below)
  • Balsamic dressing ( for salad and to marinate the beans – see recipe below)

Mixed Beans:

  • Bean mix dried or canned (try to get some kind of combination containing chickpeas, fava, navy, pinto, and black beans)
  • sun dried tomatoes chopped (if using oil packed drain onto paper towel)
  • Balsamic dressing (see recipe – let the beans marinate in a couple tablespoons of dressing plus extra salt and pepper to taste)
  • Extra salt & pepper to taste

If you are going with dried beans soak the night before. Drain, rinse and boil til tender. Set aside to cool before adding the sdt and dressing.

If going with canned beans soak in water for at least 10 minutes, drain and pat dry before adding sdt and dressing.

Balsamic Dressing: (amounts approximate, adjust to taste)

  • 3-4 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper jelly
  • 1.5  teaspoons balsamic glaze (if you don’t have add 1 tsp brown sugar)
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar (this is totally approximate cause I eyeball it)
  • 1/3 cup olive oil (approximate again – just taste and adjust)
  • Himalayan salt to taste
  • Cracked rainbow pepper to taste (or black is AOK)
  • 1 teaspoon Dried basil (or to taste)

How To:

Blend all the dressing ingredients until smooth. Taste it and adjust seasoning to your liking.

To Assemble the salad:

Put greens on plate. Top with carrots, peppers and green beans. Ladle on some bean mixture. Crumble feta on top of that. Sprinkle on the scallions. Then add some hash browns to the side of the plate. Especially if they are still warm. You don’t want them to wilt the greens.

So many colours. Yeah yeah yeah eat the rainbow as they say... yum yum yummy I'm a bun bun bunny...

So many colours. Yeah yeah yeah eat the rainbow as they say… yum yum yummy I’m a bun bun bunny…

Man. Sun dried tomatoes are not pretty lil things. But they impart A LOT of flavour to this recipe and they simply need to come to this party. Seen here getting de-greased. I am totally embarrassing them now- how horrible am I???

Man. Sun dried tomatoes are not pretty lil things. But they impart A LOT of flavour to this recipe and they simply need to come to this party. Seen here getting de-greased. I am totally embarrassing them now- how horrible am I???

Mmmmmm mixed beans!!! Can you believe I was vegetarian for 11 years in my youth and almost never ate beans! I mean I ate hummus  and the odd bean and cheese burrito - but that was it! Being a vegetarian in the 90s was so not awesome compared to all the choices and recipe ideas peeps have nowadays. I remember a co-worker once complaining that all she could ever order at a restaurant when she went to dinner with her family was hummus. HUMMUS. HUUUUMMMMUUUUUSSSSSS. It's tasty but c'mon.

Mmmmmm mixed beans!!! Can you believe I was vegetarian for 11 years in my youth and almost never ate beans! I mean I ate hummus and the odd bean and cheese burrito – but that was it! Being a vegetarian in the 90s was so not awesome compared to all the choices and recipe ideas peeps have nowadays. I remember a co-worker once complaining that all she could ever order at a restaurant when she went to dinner with her family was hummus. HUMMUS. HUUUUMMMMUUUUUSSSSSS. It’s tasty but c’mon.

All plated up and terribly inviting. Not in a terrible way but in an enthusiastic and charming British kind of way.... Wow someone is tired. I am personifying my dinner like it's frackin' Hugh Grant!

All plated up and terribly inviting. Not in a terrible way but in an enthusiastic and charming British kind of way…. Wow someone is tired. I am personifying my dinner like it’s frackin’ Hugh Grant!

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