Monday, August 1, 2011

White Bean and Artichoke Salad

Is it really August already? It feels like it was June yesterday. The summers especially fly by for me, since I am a teacher and on summer vacation. Vacation days are always shorter than work days. To celebrate the flavors of summer today, I made this bean, veggie, and herb salad. Simple summer flavors come together so easily when you have just completed your grocery/farmer's market shopping for the week. I had a hard time deciding what not to put in this, I could've easily thrown it all in there! I limited myself though- must keep it simple- must save some veggies for the rest of the week.
The cucumbers I used are called lemon cucumbers. I got them from the farmer's market because they looked interesting. They look kind of like a yellow tomato, but taste similar to a regular cucumber, with a little more crunch. Any kind of cucumber would be good in this salad.
White Bean and Artichoke Salad
(Print Recipe)

2 can white beans, drained and rinsed
1 jar artichoke hearts, drained and roughly chopped (I used the water-packed ones, with stems included on them)
1 red pepper, diced
1 medium tomato, chopped
1 cucumber, chopped
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar (you could use regular balsamic instead)
3 tablespoons regular balsamic vinegar
1/2 lemon, juiced
salt and pepper to taste
Baby arugula leaves

Combine all ingredients except arugula, stir gently, cover and chill for several hours to let the flavors blend. Serve over a bed of baby arugula leaves.
I love the light peppery bite the arugula adds to the dish. You could easily add/take out any veggies in here- just use the basic ingredients: white beans and artichokes, then create your own favorite flavor combinations!
August, please hang around for awhile.

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