Beans are a great source of protein, complex carbohydrates (the good carbs that give energy to brain and muscles) and dietary fiber. Also, beans have the “good fat” your body needs and a low glycemic index, meaning they have the ability to give you energy over a sustained period of time by slowly releasing its nutrients into your blood stream. In Latin American and Caribbean dinner tables, beans are always present. Most of the time they are stewed or refried. I really like my version of three bean salad which is easy, healthy and full of flavor. Also, beans are inexpensive and easy to store for long periods of time (canned or dry). I use organic canned beans when I find them. Serve this salad with your favorite lettuce, baby greens or over toasted bread as quick snack like a “bruschetta tre fagioli”. They always taste better the next day when the flavors settle! Be mindful I add olive oil and not extra-virgin olive oil. My aunt Evamari makes a wicked three bean salad similar to this one. Keeps in the fridge for about a week.
Three Bean Salad
1 15.5 ounce canned black beans
1 15.5 ounce canned pink beans
1 15.5 ounce canned chickpeas
4 tbsp coarsely chopped cilantro
4 tbsp finely chopped red onion
2 fresh garlic cloves minced
2 tbsp finely chopped red bell pepper
2 tsp fine sea salt
pinch ground cumin
pinch smoked sweet paprika
2 cups of olive oil
pepper to taste
1. Open cans and drain beans in colander. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients and refrigerate. Serve with green salad, alone or over toasted bread.