Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Red Bean Salad

When I returned to Bakersfield after an 8-1/2-year stint in the Navy, I discovered Mossman’s, a country buffet in Bakersfield. They served several wonderful bean salads. Zesty ingredients like lemon juice and hot peppers brought life to the legume.


Make sure you thoroughly rinse the gloppy, salty liquid from the beans. Roast a ripe red bell pepper over an open flame until the skin is completely charred if desired. When the pepper is blackened, wrap it in plastic wrap and let it steam and cool. When cool enough to handle, pull stem out, scrape charred skin off and chop.

2 (15-ounce) cans red beans
2 tablespoons chopped jalapeno pepper
2 tablespoons minced shallot
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
2 teaspoons cumin
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoons black pepper
1 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium roasted red bell pepper
1/2 chopped cilantro
1/4 chopped flat-leaf parsley

Rinse and drain canned beans. In a medium bowl, whisk together jalapeno pepper, shallot, paprika, cumin, salt, pepper, and lemon zest and juice. Let mixture set for 30 minutes to marry flavors.

Toss dressing with beans. Fold in olive oil, roasted pepper, cilantro and parsley. Check seasoning and serve cold. Serves 4 to 6.

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