Parsley, Lemon and Cannellini Bean Salad

Bright, fresh, tangy and satisfying.  This is another rockstar recipe from Yotam Ottolenghi’s new book  Plenty More.    His recipes are easy to make and have surprising flavors that make my mouth so happy.  I hate canned beans, so I always make mine from scratch–plan ahead (four hours in a crockpot).  The second recipe below for the beans is simple, and you’ll never go back to a can again.  Outside of the beans, the recipe is super fast to make.

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Ingredients 

2/3 cup red quinoa

2/3 cup flat leaf parsley, finely shredded

2/3 cup mint leaves, finely shredded

4 green onions, thinly sliced

1 1/3 cups cooked cannelini beans (recipe follows)

1/2 large lemon, skin and seeds removed, flesh finely chopped (1/3 cup)

1/2 t. ground allspice

1/4 cup good olive oil

salt and black pepper

Directions (I usually make just half this recipe)

Bring a saucepan of water to a boil.  Add the quinoa and simmer for 11 minutes. Drain and refresh under cold water and set aside to dry completely.  Transfer the cooked quinoa to a large bowl.  Add the parsley, mint, green onions, beans, lemon, allspice, olive oil, 3/4 teaspoon salt and some black pepper.  Stir together and serve.  I added some pomegranate seeds just because I had some.

Beans

1 lb cannellini beans

6 cups chicken stock

6 cups water

2 sprigs thyme

1 bay leaf

kosher salt

1/2 leak

1/2 carrot

1/2 white onion

1 oz. bacon

Wash and rinse the beans.  DO NOT SOAK.  Heat the stock and water to a pot and add to a slow cooker.  Add the thyme, bay leaf, a teaspoon salt, leek, carrot, onion, beans and bacon. Slow cook on high until tender–about four hours.  Remove vegetables and herbs, and cool and store beans in liquid.

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