Judith Hausman
May 29, 2013


Photo by Judith Hausman

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Serve this white bean salad along a (grass-fed) steak dinner.

Salad days are here. Still, on a chillier-than-it-was-supposed-to-be evening, I wanted a salad that still had some of the heft and comfort of cooler weather food to accompany barbecue food, so I combined seasons with a salad based on white beans. 

Tossed with a pile of thinly-sliced, spring vegetables (the slicing blade of a food processor makes for a quick prep) and dressed with plenty of bright, lemony flavor, the salad rounded out our grass-fed steak dinner on a Saturday night.

White beans make a great foundation for salads later in the season as well. Ribbons of zucchini, torn basil and oil-packed tuna are the next in line. Then, at the height of the summer, roasted red peppers, fresh tomatoes and thin strips of grilled chicken or bits of feta or smoked mozzarella cheese nestle nicely in the creamy beans.

Servings: 4 to 6


  • 2 cups cooked white beans (cannellini or smaller ones)
  • 6 to 8 asparagus spears, ends snapped and thinly sliced
  • 6 radishes, thinly sliced
  • 1 small fennel bulb, thinly sliced
  • 1 small red onion, sweet onion or several scallions, sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped, dill, parsley (add more/less to taste)
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • zest of one lemon, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 4 to 6 anchovy filets, chopped
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed through a garlic press
  • 1/4 cup or more olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • salt, pepper and a pinch of red pepper flakes

If using canned beans, rinse and drain. 

Then, whisk together all dressing ingredients, and in a serving dish, pour half of the dressing over the beans. 

Toss the salad vegetables and herbs with the other half of the dressing, and pile them on top of the beans. 

Serve at room temperature.


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