Tomato & White Bean Salad takes 10 minutes to make, and is perfect with crusty bread as a main meal salad. It also makes an easy side dish.
The Princess has been peering into other lunchboxes at school, and has decided everybody’s lunch is far better than hers. To address this, she has abandoned her standard sandwich in favour of salad for lunch. However, those of you familiar with The Princess know that a simple lettuce and tomato salad is not going to cut it, and only a gourmet main meal salad will do. So this week she is enjoying my Tomato and White Bean Salad in her lunchbox.
This is one of the easiest salads I make. It often graces our dinner table during the summer months, either as a main meal or a side dish, and is a great way to use up the cherry tomatoes when they are coming thick and fast from the garden. I often stir through crumbled feta cheese, salted capers or olives to add an extra zing, or replace the cherry tomatoes with slow roasted tomatoes, and mix in chopped basil when it is in season. On occasion I will stir through a tin of tuna, and serve with a green salad and crusty bread for the perfect lazy summer meal.
At one time, eating beans would cause me no end of intestinal grief. That was until I learnt how to cook them properly. The secret is to give the beans a long overnight soak in lots of cold water before cooking them. Soaking the beans leaches out some of the long-chain sugars that are responsible for digestion issues. I also like to add a small piece of kombu (widely used in Japanese cooking) to the beans as they cook, which assists in their digestion. Since employing these two techniques I have been able to eat beans without issue.
Whilst I normally prefer to cook my own beans, I always have a couple of tins of cannellini beans in the cupboard for emergencies. Tinned beans make a perfectly acceptable substitute, and they are a simple way of ensuring dinner is on the table quickly.
To be honest I am quite happy to make The Princess salad for lunch. Don’t tell her though. A large batch of this tomato and white bean salad will keep happily in the fridge for a up to three days. The Princess serves herself a portion in the morning, adds some greens, and happily takes her up-to-scratch lunch off to school. Everybody wins.
Tomato and White Bean Salad
Whilst this salad is good as is, I also like to stir though crumbled feta, roasted tomatoes, salted capers, or olives. Replace the parsley with basil when in season. Add a tin of tuna for a great lunch or summer dinner. It is extremely adaptable.
The salad will keep in the fridge for up to three days.
For the salad dressing
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Salt & pepper
For the salad
- 150 g cherry tomatoes halved
- 1 Tablespoon quick pickled onions (or 1 green onion finely sliced)
- 2 Tablespoons chopped parsley
- 2 cups cooked & drained cannellini beans or other white beans
To make the salad dressing
- Place the lemon juice and olive oil in a small jar with a lid.
- Season well with salt and pepper.
- Shake to combine the ingredients and set aside.
To assemble the salad
- Place the tomatoes, parsley and pickled onions or green onion into a bowl.
- Stir thoroughly to combine.
- Add the beans to the bowl.
- Pour over the dressing.
- Gently toss everything together. Stir the salad gently as the beans will break up if you are too vigorous.
- Serve & Enjoy!