I’m a big bean lover so any recipe featuring beans, I’m all over. Another of my favourite bean recipes is HERE. As those who know me know, Ottolenghi is an old favourite and I can’t get enough of his food / restaurants / cookbooks / tv shows. Some of my other favourite recipes of his include: his Green Bean and Orange Salad and his Custard Yo-Yo’s with Rhubarb Icing.
This cannellini bean salad recipe is adapted from one of his more recent books, Plenty More, which follows on from 2010’s Plenty and is entirely focused on veggie recipes. As someone who has been an aspiring vegetarian (i.e. pescatarian) for the past 2 years, this book is both comforting and inspiring. If you do ever make the switch to eat less or no meat, one of the trickiest things can be finding new go-to recipes. ‘What do you actually eat,’ a lot of people ask!? So do yourself a favour and go and get Ottolenghi’s Plenty More – you’ll forget all about meat very quickly.
This is a very simple recipe, great for a work lunch that can be pre-prepared at home or a side dish to a main meal. Ottolenghi uses spring onions in the original recipe, so feel free to sub out the red onion for these if you prefer, but I think using quickly pickled onions adds a lovely vinegary dimension to the salad. I’ve also added chilli which is optional.
I like to eat this with a big blob of coriander pesto, hummus or a ball of fresh mozzarella. It would also go well with a poached egg.
- 1/4 cup red or white quinoa
- 1/4 red onion
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup red or white white vinegar
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1/2 red chilli
- Small bunch mint leaves
- Small bunch of flat-leaf parsley
- 1/2 lemon
- 250 g cannellini beans (cooked and drained)
- 1/2 tsp all spice
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt & black pepper
Cook the quinoa according to packet instructions (for red about 11 minutes, white about 9 minutes). Drain in a fine sieve and refresh under cold water. Set aside to dry.
Meanwhile, finely slice the red onion, then place in a small bowl and set aside. In a small saucepan combine both vinegars, the water, salt and the honey. Once the honey has dissolved, pour the hot liquid over the red onion and set aside. These only need about 10-15 minutes (but can also be done in advance).
Finely slice the chilli, mint, parsley and the flesh of the lemon (the inside, not the skin!).
Transfer the cooked quinoa to a large bowl, along with all remaining ingredients, season with salt and plenty of freshly cracked black pepper. Add as much of the pickled onions as you wish (not the liquid just the onion). Stir and serve.