May 21, 2008

epicurious george: bean salad I want your recipes for simple bean salads.

I posted this to Ask Metafilter yesterday and got some great ideas, but a few were a bit too vague (lists of ingredients, but no measurements or proportions). I wish to pick the gourmet Monkey brains and extract the delicious beany creations within. I want to make some bean salads that will keep a few days in the fridge, and that I can take to work for lunch during the week. The simpler the better - short prep time, few ingredients. The following evil "foods" should not appear in the bean salad; recipes that include them are fine as long as the offending ingredient can be skipped: canned green beans (frozen or fresh is ok; any other canned bean except lima is ok) lima beans onions (garlic is A-OK) peppers of any kind (bell, jalapeno, etc.) cumin mushrooms arsenic salmonella despair A black-or-red bean and couscous-or-rice salad would be ideal, but I'm having a hard time finding simple recipes for those. I prefer using canned beans to dry beans (quicker prep, less chance of undercooked beans). Suggestions for good cookbooks are also encouraged. Many thanks! Previous "recipe-filter" threads have served up a heaping helping of snark for some reason; monkey chefs will kindly leave out this ingredient as well. It spoils the palate.

  • Aspic.. arsenic... aspic... arsenic... who can be expected to tell the difference?
  • I can't make any suggestions as to bean salads, nor of anything in the whole fruit/vegetable arena, as I'm a big boy now, and I don't hafta eat what I donwanna, but I will say that as for cookbooks, The Joy of Cooking is fairly basic and comprehensive, and is likely to have anything you will ever want to make. It's a bit boring, perhaps, but the recipies can all be juiced up a bit with a personal touch without too much trouble. That said, if anyone wants to buy me a copy of Larousse Gastronomique, please feel free.
  • 1 can kidney beans 1 can black beans 1 can garbanzos clove or two of garlic 1 smallish carrot, grated 1 bunch scallions, sliced (if you can do green onion) Olive oil and red wine vinegar Salt and pepper Drain the beans (though I like to leave in some of the juice for extra beany goodness.) Combine with garic, carrot (and scallions?) I suggest using a bowl for that step and the next. Drizzle over approximately equal amounts of oil and vinegar. (I've never measured those since the beans tell me when they're perfectly seasoned, but I'd guess it's about a quarter cup of each.) You're on your own for the salt and pepper. Mix. Refrigerate for at least an hour to let the flavors become acquainted. It'll keep for several days and the flavors will fall in love with each other. You could probably add pre-cooked rice to get the complete protein. Try a test-batch.
  • Checked Joy of Cooking, and it had but one "bean salad"-type recipe, and it included tripe or something equally frightening. So, no. Path's recipe is along the lines of what I'm looking for. Keep 'em coming!
  • 150 grams brown lentils 150 g cooked rice (brown or long-grain white) 1 diced onion 2 cloves garlic 1 large tomato, cut into small chunks Fresh coriander or basil, chopped Fresh chives, chopped 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 teaspoons lemon juice Just mix it up in a bowl in the order listed. Should be good for three or four days in the fridge, especially if you leave out the onion.
  • Monkeyfilter: I wish to pick the gourmet Monkey brains oohhh... tasty.
  • Roryk's recipe made me think that adding some of your favorite beans to a tabouli salad might also be nifty. The bulgar wheat would give it good texture.
  • 1 can borlotti or cannellini beans 1 can black-eyed peas a finely chopped red onion maybe scallion instead, like path suggested? a small chopped fennel bulb chopped fresh dill chopped fresh parsley Mix all of the above in a bowl, then pour over dressing made from: the juice of 1 lime 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar 1 tablespoon water (possibly more, YMMV) 2 teaspoons blackcurrant cordial salt and pepper olive oil to taste (I only use a little because I'm not a huge fan -- keep mixin' it in until the dressing reaches a taste and consistency you like) Not sure how long it keeps, but it should be fine for at least a couple of days.
  • Beans + carrots + some green veggies. Chop 'em all up. Bung 'em in your gob. Lubberly.
  • I just had this chickpea & lemon recipe from your AskMe thread (made it last night). It's not bad, but needs a little something. I think next time I'll add a can of tuna.
  • I like the chickpea/lemon/parmesan recipe from that thread. Definitely going to try that one. Blackcurrant cordial, mothy? That's some fancy-pants dressing you got there ;) (I like the fennel bulb and dill though ...) p.s. scallions taste like burning
  • Vera's Grandma's Bean Salad 1 can wax beans 1 can navy beans 1 can garbanzo beans 2 ribs celery, thinly sliced (crosswise, into little crescents) 1/2 small onion (2-3 cloves garlic would work) 1/2 c vinegar (red wine vinegar is lovely, cider vinegar would work too) 1/2 c oil (light olive oil or something with little to no flavor, like sunflower or canola) 3 Tbs sugar salt & pepper to taste Drain and rinse beans and put in a large glass bowl with celery and onion/garlic. Whisk vinegar, oil, sugar, salt, and pepper together until well blended. Pour this mixture over the other ingredients and toss lightly, not so much that the navy beans start to come apart. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit in fridge overnight.
  • Blackcurrant cordial, mothy? That's some fancy-pants dressing you got there ;) Well, technically speaking it ought to be Swedish svartvinbärsgelé, which is a clear blackcurrant jelly, but I've never managed to find that outside the Motherland... And also, thinking about it, maybe I meant to say 'concentrate' rather than 'cordial'? Blackcurrant-flavour-stuff-you-mix-with-water-to-make-a-drink, anyway, is what I meant, like Ribena in the UK. It's not as good as the svartvinbärsgelé, because it's sweeter, but does the job. And really isn't very fancy-pants at all :)
  • "p.s. scallions taste like burning" Ah, too bad, 'cause they do add a satisfying crunch. Fresh spinach might be nice, though I think that might work better if you added a few leaves on top as you packed your lunch and mixed them in when you were ready to eat. Jicama is sturdier, maybe 3 or 4 slices diced for the recipe I posted, which makes a lot. Fresh green beans or fennel could also work, as could broccoli - I love the stems, but the florets would also be nice. Add dill at will. No recipe is sacred. The MeFi thread had calls for corn, and you could do that - either canned or frozen (eh) or sliced off the cob and eaten without cooking it, if you like a bit, or a lot of sweetness, depending on how much you use. If you REALLy like corn use a lot. If you don't use part of a cob, or none. I guess what I'm saying is that we all start with recipies that sound good, and then hone in on the combinations that make us happy. You don't seem to be someone who is "into" cooking, but think of it as a creative venture. I usually start with the recipe as given, then think about other possibilities, based on tastes I like and thinking about how they would intermix. And, if you tried something that didn't work well, it wouldn't trash you forever - you just try the next possibility. You could even take one version of bean salad and make several possibilities to try, then pick the one(s) you liked best for future lunching. Cooking is not difficult or mysterious. I've even improved on the recipies my old mother passed down.
  • Dear Ms Koko Due to your already egregious gas outputs, it has been decided that you are no longer licensed to consume teh beans, as the ozone cannot take any more. Please desist immediately. However, you have been selected to be this month's cover girl on 'Gas Mask Fancier's Monthly'. Congratulations. Many thanks The Rest Of The World
  • And Monkeybrains, while popular in Cantonese cuisine...
  • Pssst...that smell isn't Koko. It's just her foul hoodie.