Three bean salad is a side dish screaming for a makeover. This canned bean deli staple has the potential to sing not hum when fresh ingredients are used and the syrupy sweet dressing is toned down to enhance not overwhelm. (I think pancake syrup has less sugar in it.)
I start with fresh green and yellow beans. To that I add an onion, kidney beans and a kinder, gentler dressing. The result is a very fresh, crunchy sweet-sour salad. It keeps well, but likely won’t last long.
Above, freshly picked from my garden, Soleil yellow beans, Fortex green beans and Gold of Bacau romano beans make an exceptional salad. Blanching brings out their color and flavor.
RECIPE: Garden Fresh Three Bean Salad
Ingredients – Salad
- 2 pounds of your favorite beans
- (a mixture of gold and yellow, filet and romano beans)
- 1 large sweet onion
- 1 can of red kidney beans
Ingredients – Dressing
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 teaspoons honey (or sugar)
- pinch of kosher or sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- optional twist: add a couple drops of sesame oil and toasted sesame seeds to dressing
Preparation – Salad
- Blanch beans: dip fresh beans in salted boiling water for 1-2 minutes.
- Remove when colors brighten, rinse with cold water to cool down beans
- Chop into bite-size pieces and place in bowl
- Thinly slice a sweet onion into rings, then halve rings
- Add to chopped beans
- Rinse 15 oz. can of kidney beans, drain and add to chopped beans
- Mix all the ingredients, refrigerate
- Make dressing
Preparation – Dressing & Salad
- Add all dressing ingredients to small bowl
- Whisk to combine ingredients
- Drizzle over bean bowl and toss salad
- Cover and refrigerate for an hour
- Toss before serving
You’ll never think of three bean salad the same way again.
Oh and one last thing…Here’s to trying new things and playing with your food.