CANNELLINI & GREEN BEAN SALAD
Cannellini & Green Bean Salad
To prepare dried Cannellini beans for cooking: Soak bag of beans in 1 gallon of water to which 3 tablespoons of salt has been dissolved. Soak 12-24 hours, then rinse thoroughly, Place in cooking pot with fresh water at least 2/3 water to 1/3 beans. Cook on simmer until beans are tender. Note: because they have been brined, you can expect them to cook a little faster and they won’t shed their skins. When tender “to the tooth,” meaning holds shape with firm but cooked texture, remove from heat and carefully drain off the water. Without rinsing, while still warm, toss with the seasoning blend. Spread on sided cooking sheet and place into refrigerator to cool.
Have the following ready ahead and set aside until beans are cooked but still warm: 1 clove garlic, pasted, 2 teaspoons FLAVORS OF TUSCANY, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, 3-4 tablespoons EVOO, 1-2 teaspoons salt
To assemble the salad: 1 cup green beans, blanched, French cut 1 carrot, minced 2 celery stalks, minced 1 small red bell pepper, cleaned of membrane and seeds, minced zest of one lemon 1 tablespoon preserved lemon, minced if desired (***) see our recipe ¼ cup EVOO 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped 1 tablespoon chives, chopped 3 cup cannellini beans, cooked, dressed, and cooled 1 bunch fresh baby arugula, lightly dressed with salt and EVOO for the base of the salad
Blend all ingredients, except the arugula, just before serving. At service, place the arugula on the plate and top with the bean salad.
(***) Cured Lemon (aka-preserved lemon) Ingredients:
1 lemon 1 cup salt
Method: Slice lemon thinly. Remove seeds. Layer slices between layers of salt in a now corrosive bowl, pan or canning jar. When done, all lemon slices are separated with a layer of salt on top and bottom. Cover pan and refrigerate for 24 hours before using. As needed, remove lemon slice or slices, from the salt and rinse thoroughly under cold water. Pat dry. On cutting board, chop entire lemon, skin and all, into small dice; use immediately. Hold remaining cured lemons till needed in the refrigerator for up to a month.
Enjoy preserved (cured) lemon in any dish calling for lemon juice /lemon zest and salt for a slightly bitter-salty lemon flavor. The salt will take the lemon rind sting away and leave a very palatable and more complex lemon flavor.