The days of overflowing gardens and refrigerators full of produce are upon us! What to do with all of those peppers, tomatoes, and onions? I got it! A fresh black bean salad!
On Saturday, the girls and I went to the market to pick up what is not growing in our garden, such as peppers (mine aren't ready yet), cucumbers, carrots, and garlic. While I was picking out a few hot peppers, my girls saw some "pretty tomatoes" that they really wanted to buy. Apparently the tomatoes in our garden aren't pretty. So I bought tomatoes as well.
On the drive home my mind was pairing peppers with quinoa, no. Peppers, cooked, with a sauce, maybe enchiladas, no. How about a cold black bean salad, alright now we're talking. Oh and I could use the tomatoes that the girls just had to have. The mammoth-sized green onions in our garden would go well here too. Now I just need some limes.
How is that for a sneak peek into my mind?
This evening, as I was preparing this salad for dinner, I snitched a piece of pepper. A spicy hot blast of fiery red pepper burnt my lips. Tom walked in the door just at that moment to hear me cussing in front of the kids. He quickly went into the fridge and opened up a bottle of Green's gluten-free beer. "Here" he said, "this will help." I have not had a beer in quite a while but that tasted so good and immediately calmed the fire on my lips.
I thought I was buying a sweet Italian pepper, they look the same, at least I think? I kept them in the salad and thought we would just give it a try. Mixed with everything else it was totally edible and actually quite delicious, but still spicy.
Needless to say I didn't want to serve this to my kids. For them I made mashed black bean and avocado wraps with roasted potatoes on the side.
Read below for helpful kitchen tips.
Spicy Summer Black Bean Salad
This fresh salad is full of antioxidants, vitamins (especially vitamin C), and live enzymes (from the raw vegetables). It is low in fat and high in fiber; a perfect cholesterol lowering meal. Serve it for a party or bring it to a potluck. It can also be served in lettuce leaves as a "wrap" or "taco." Serve it over cooked quinoa for a heartier meal.
6 cups cooked black beans
4 cups chopped tomatoes
3 ears raw corn, cut off the cob *
3 spicy peppers such as jalapeno or banana peppers, diced *
1 mild red pepper, diced (such as a bell pepper or another spicy one if you dare)
2 cups sliced green onions or chopped sweet onions
1 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
the juice from 2 limes
2 teaspoons Herbamare (or sea salt)
1 to 2 teaspoons ground cumin
Place all salad ingredients into a large glass bowl. Whisk the ingredients for the dressing in a separate small bowl. Pour dressing over salad and gently toss together.
*Tip: To cut the corn from the cob, hold the corn upright over a plate. Use a serrated knife and a gentle sawing action to cut the corn away.
*Tip: To easily remove the seeds from hot peppers, hold the pepper upright on a cutting board and cut away the sides into fourths, leaving the "core." Rinse the pepper pieces under running water to remove any seeds.
*Tip: For info on how to cook beans, please refer to this post. If you do not want to cook your own beans you can use canned beans. 6 cups cooked beans equals about 3 to 4 cans.