Bean salad reminds me of summer. It brings me back to picnics on the beach when you wanted something, cold, refreshing, and a bit acidic to cool you down and fill you up. To me, this is the perfect picnic bean salad. There is a variety of textures in the beans which are contrasted with the quick crunch of the onion and peppers. It is a perfect accompaniment to a rich, smooth classic potato salad. Plus, its a pretty salad with all the different colours and the beans glistening in the sun.I like to make the salad the day before and let it sit overnight in half the dressing. I find the beans really soak up with lime flavour which is washed down with the maple syrup or honey sweetness in the dressing. That being said, the easiest way to kill this salad is to overdress it. There is nothing worse than a beans salad that has been allowed to wallow in a vinegar dressing. It completely kills the sweetness of the peppers, the tartness of the onion, and all you can taste when you get to a bean is vinegar. By letting the salad sit overnight, you’re not dressing it in one go which should help you be a bit more delicate with the dressing. (I tend to be one of those people who make the dressing and then just dump it on without tossing between additions. Whoopseeee.) That being said, the amounts given in this recipe should work out to the correct salad-to-dressing ratio.
Serves 8-10 as a salad
- 3 cans of different kinds of beans (think kidney, white, and black)
- 1 red onion
- 1 red pepper
- 1 green pepper
- 1 1/2 cups frozen corn
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 limes (juice and zest)
- 1-2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp honey or maple syrup
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- Rinse the beans and leave in a colander to drain as you prepare the other ingredients.
- Finely dice both peppers and the red onion.
- In a big bowl, toss together the drained beans, peppers, corn, and onion.
- To make the dressing, zest and juice the limes into a small bowl.
- Add the oils, sweetener, a few grinds salt, and cumin.
- Whisk the dressing together and have a taste.
- Add the white wine vinegar to taste.
- Pour half the dressing over the salad and toss well. Set the rest of the dressing aside to be added right before serving.
- Leave the salad to sit in the fridge until you need it.
- When you are ready to serve, pour over the remaining dressing over the salad and toss well.