This recipe is inspired by some “Asian” noodle salad from a local market’s prepared food section. I grab it when I swing by for their house-made frozen cod cakes. I did the online search for “Asian” noodle salad, mixed and matched a few things and came up with this.
It seemed to go over well and the leftovers were as good, if not a bit better, after a couple of days rest in the fridge.
I wanted a side dish that would combine some fresh vegetables (cukes/peppers) with some easy protein (canned beans). The dressing is based on one from FoodTV; they used it on a different salad however I liked the sound of it and it worked out well.
Cucumber and Bean Salad with citrus dressing
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 15 minutes
1 14.5 oz. can chickpeas
1 14.5 oz. can black beans
1 cucumber, peeled, quartered, seeded and cut into 1″ pieces
1 red pepper, seeded and cut into 2″ pieces
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 lime, zested and juiced
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1 Tbsp. granulated sugar
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Rinse the chickpeas and black beans, add to a bowl with the cucumbers and red peppers.
In a jar combine the remaining ingredients, shake well. Pour about half of the dressing over the vegetables, toss to combine. Taste and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
Serve with remaining dressing available for those who want it.
The vegetables can be combined up to 2 hours in advance and the the dressing can similarly be made up to a day in advance. Store both in the refrigerator until 30 minutes before serving.
I used Goya low-sodium chickpeas and black beans in this dish. If you aren’t using low-sodium beans then you might want to cut the kosher salt by half in the dressing.
Black-Eyed Pea Salad
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 3 hours (or overnight)
2 1/2 cups dried black eyed peas, soaked overnight
2 bay leaves
4 cloves garlic
1 1/2 tsp. table salt
1/4 cup lime juice (about 1 lg. lime)
1 cup vegetable oil
1 bunch parsley, roughly chopped (about 1 cup)
10 scallions, roughly chopped
1 red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and finely chopped
1 can petite diced tomato, drained and rinsed
1/2 English cucumber, seeded and finely chopped
1 fresno chile, seeded and finely chopped
kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
Start by cooking the black-eyed peas. After soaking overnight drain and rinse. Then place peas in a large pot with 3 quarts fresh water as well as the bay leaves and garlic. Bring to a simmer, cover partially, and cook for 30-35 minutes until the peas are just tender. Turn off the heat, stir in the table salt, cover and allow to rest for 15 more minutes. Drain and spread out on a rimmed baking sheet to cool, at least 2 hours.
In a bowl large enough for the entire salad whisk the oil into lime juice. Add the parsley, a generous pinch of kosher salt and 10 grinds of black pepper.
Add the remaining ingredients and mix well until the dressing thoroughly coats the salad. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
Cover with plastic wrap and set aside for at least an hour. Better yet refrigerate overnight. Can be served straight from the fridge or at room temperature.
Any neutral flavored oil can be used, such as canola or safflower, in place of vegetable.
When tomatoes are locally available substitute 1 large or 2 medium tomatoes which you have cored, seeded and roughly chopped. No need to remove the skin.
This recipe is based on one from the July 2013 issue of Saveur magazine.
I made this as part of the menu for my husband’s birthday bash this year. It came together very quickly and was very well received.
Corn, Avocado and Tomato Salad
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 60 minutes
2 cups frozen roasted corn, thawed
1 ping cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
1 lime, zested and juiced
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Add the thawed corn, halved tomatoes, lime zest and cilantro to a large bowl.
Juice half of the lime into a smaller bowl. Halve an avocado, remove the pit, scoop out the yummy flesh and cut it into 1/4″ pieces. Toss with the lime juice and repeat for the second avocado. Add the avocado to the large bowl.
Squeeze the other lime half into the larger bowl. Season with a big pinch of salt and a dozen grinds of black pepper. Stir well to incorporate.
Allow to sit at room temperature for 45 minutes for the lime and cilantro to season the dish.
Tossing the avocado with the lime juice is important as it help prevent the avocado from turning brown.
Take care when mixing everything together; a heavy hand will mush the avocado into a very chunky guacamole.
I think the original recipe came from Food Network.
I want to call this a quick recipe even though it takes 3 hours to get ready. Most of that is letting it sit on the counter though so I think it is an easy addition to a menu. We served it alongside lemon grilled chicken thighs and sauteed corn with bacon this past weekend.
Prep time: 60 minutes
Total time: 3 hours (with lots of downtime)
1 cup bulgur , fine or medium grain, rinsed under running water and drained
2 lemon, divided (see directions), juiced and zested
1 lime, juiced and zested
1/3 cup olive oil
Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
1/2 tsp. sweet paprika
2cups minced fresh parsley leaves
1 cup assorted tomatoes from the garden
4 medium scallions , green and white parts, minced
Zest and juice 1 lemon and 1 lime. Combine with enough warm tap water to equal 1/2 cup.
Place the bulgur wheat in a micowave safe bowl and add the lemon/lime water. Stir and let sit for 20 minutes so that the liquid can rehydrate the bulgur.
Taste the bulgur and see if it has rehydrated sufficiently. If not you can either let it continue to sit for another 10-20 minutes or you can cover it with plastic wrap and microwave it on high for 2 minutes.
While the bulgur rehydrates you make the dressing. Combine the zest and juice from the second lemon, olive oil, a big pinch of salt, several grinds of pepper and the paprika with a whisk.
When the bulgur is ready mix in the parsley and dressing. Stir to combine and refrigerate for 1-2 hours to allow the flavors to meld.
15 minutes before you want to serve the tabouleh prep the tomatoes. We used a mix of grape, cherry and green zebra tomatoes. The grape and cherry ones were halved. The green zebra was diced to an equivalent size. Add the tomatoes, scallions and mint to the bulgur. Stir to combine and serve.
Please don’t add the tomatoes before you refrigerate this dish. Tomatoes taste best at room temperature and putting them in the fridge dulls the flavor. Honest. You can refrigerate the leftover tabouleh however it won’t taste nearly as good the second time around.