Saturday, April 21, 2012

Spinach, Cherry Tomatoes, and Black Beans Salad

These days, even more than ever, I am into salads . Maybe because we had no winter this year, spring is already in full bloom and on hot days salads taste best. I always loved them. They are my favorite lunch--easy to assemble with no strict rules to follow and a welcome scope for experimenting. And on top of that the next day I still weight the same if not less.

Today, I prepared spinach, cherry tomatoes, and black beans salad. I often make it for weekend brunches when I have guests house. Everyone so far has enjoyed it very much, trying to guess what was so special about that salad beyond the basic ingredients that you could easily see. I think the secret of this salad is in its dressing which makes it taste unique. It is sweet and spicy and has a strong taste of onion and fresh coriander. It blends nicely with the taste of beans and fresh vegetables.

Because beans are rich in proteins, this salad can be the whole meal in itself or be served with bread and cold cuts.

Spinach, Cherry Tomatoes, and Black Beans Salad

1/2 lb cherry tomatoes,
15.5 oz can of black or red beans,
5-6 oz bag of baby spinach,
1 medium red onion,
1/2 cup chopped fresh coriander,
1 garlic clove, chopped,
1 tbsp lemon juice,
1 tbsp white vinegar,
1 tsp brown sugar,
1 tbsp running honey,
1 tsp mustard,
3 tbsp olive oil,
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper,
salt and pepper to taste.

1. Open a can of beans and rinse them under the running cold water. Drain them on a colander and place it in a large bowl.
2. Cut cherry tomatoes in halves and add to the beans. Add baby spinach leaves and chopped onion.

3. To make a dressing, in a medium bowl mix together garlic, lemon juice, vinegar, sugar, honey, mustard, cayenne pepper, black pepper, salt and olive oil. Add chopped coriander and mix again.

Pour the dressing over the vegetables and mix everything gently together.