This traditional-style recipe uses several key ingredients of the healthy Mediterranean diet: beans, olive oil, and garlic. Inexpensive to make and bursting with flavor and great nutrition, and offering complete protein without animal products, Tuscan White Bean Salad makes a great bring-along to summer picnics, cook-outs, and parties.
Here’s how to make it:
4 – 5 cups warm cooked white beans
1 cup very thinly sliced red onions
1/2 cup Basic Balsamic Vinaigrette (see below)
6 cups mixed baby lettuce or salad greens of choice
2 cups warm cooked brown rice
1 cup Italian Salsa (see below)
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves, rolled and cut in thin strips
1. In a bowl, toss the beans with red onions and 1/4 cup of the Basic Balsamic Vinaigrette. Divide the greens among 4 plates or bowls. Drizzle the other 1/4 cup vinaigrette over the greens.
2. Top each plate of greens with 1/2 cup brown rice. Spoon a quarter of the bean mixture over rice in each plate. Top each with Italian Salsa. Garnish with fresh basil leaves.
Basic Balsamic Vinaigrette
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, or to taste
1. Puree onion and vinegar in a blender. Then, with blender on low speed, gradually add oil. salt and pepper.
1 cups chopped fresh or canned tomatoes
1 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup fresh basil, rolled and cut into thin strips
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and black pepper, to taste