Hello guys, how are you doing? I’m feeling great and excited to share more recipes with you!
I’m back from my Italian break – went to visit my parents for my mum’s super 60th birthday and it was real fun (apart from the massive heat!)!
While in Italy I couldn’t help by treating my parents with lots scrumptious recipes, with fruits and veggies handpicked every morning from their amazing garden! And I brought home so many fresh foods and pasta shapes, ready to be included in my future experiments!
A couple of weeks before my visit, my parents sundried a bunch of homegrown tomatoes, specifically for me to take back to the UK.
Aren’t they lovely? They know me so well. I, in fact, would rather go food hunting or shopping than shopping for clothes, shoes or accessories.
Indeed, this is how odd I am, LOL!
And, while visiting the amazing and colourful Italian markets, I couldn’t resist those wonderful and fresh borlotti beans, that are sold still in their pods.
I then asked the kind man behind the stall to make sure to provide me fresh ones on the morning of my departure so I could prepare one of my favourite summery bean salad: this Borlotti Beans and Sundried Tomato Salad.
This recipe features just a bunch of delicious ingredients that come up together nicely into one dish that will leave your tastebuds happy!
One portion (1/6 of the ingredients listed below) only provides 270kcal, along with 13 grams of proteins, 5.1 grams of iron, a high amount of magnesium and a fair amout of both calcium and vitamins.
Feel free to double up the serving if you wish to consume this salad as a main dish and to pair it with a bunch of steamed/roasted green veggies and carrots or sweet potatoes for an healthy and balanced meal.
Main Ingredients and Steps
To replicate this healthy and nourishing borlotti beans and sundried tomato salad you’ll only need: borlotti beans, sundried tomatoes, 1 onion and a bunch of herbs and spices.
You can easily find borlotti beans dried or canned all year long, and fresh during summer and the beginning of autumn season.
Fresh ones are usually sold still in their pods, like fresh fava beans and peas.
Fresh borlotti beans only require 30 minutes cooking, compared to the dried ones that need to be soaked overnight or for at least 12 hours before boiling them for 1:30.
They are similar to Pinto Beans, although they are bigger in size and brighter in colour.
If you can’t find fresh borlotti beans, you can easily use dried ones and cook them accordingly, or even canned ones, and skip cooking the beans.
Second main ingredient for this recipe is Sundried Tomatoes.
I used organic freshly picked tomatoes that my parents kindly sundried on their roof terrace for a bunch of days.
So flavourful, they are the perfect match for this dish.
If using dried tomatoes we will need to soak the tomatoes in plenty of water for at least half an hour before chopping them for this recipe.
To cook fresh borlotti beans first we need to remove the beans from their pods.
This is a very easy and straighforward step: gently press and slightly twist the pod until it opens and pass the thumb underneeth the beans in order to help them come off easily.
Then we need to wash the beans throughout and transfer them in a large pot with water, bay leaves and kelp (kombu) seaweed.
Everytime I cook beans at home I always make sure to add some kelp seaweed (also known as kombu) to the water in order to get extra vitamins, iodine and minerals.
Bring the beans to a boil, then cover with a lid and simmer for half an hour.
During cooking the borlotti beans will (unfortunately) lose their purple stripes and become beige/brown-ish.
Once they’re cooked, turn off the heat and allow the beans to cool completely in their water.
At this point you can drain and set the beans aside.
Their cooking water will result in the famous aquafaba, and can be used in numerous recipes in place of whipped egg whites. So: DO NOT THROW IT AWAY! 🙂
As soon as the sundried tomatoes are soft, we need to rinse them well and squeeze the eccess of water out. Then we can chop them as we please.
For this recipe I prefer chopping in small pieces: first cut lenghtwise, and 3-4 cuts on each half.
The final result should look like this.
Now it’s time to sauté 1 finely chopped red onion in olive oil and a bit of water for around 10 minutes (or until translucent).
Then tomatoes and herbs (oregano and thyme) go in for another 5 minutes.
Finally it’s time to add the borlotti beans and season with salt and pepper. I’d like to add 1/2 a cup of water too for a jucier salad, but feel free not to add it if you prefer a drier result.
Cook the bean with the onion and tomato for another 10-15 minutes, and allow to cool completely before serving.
Finish with abundant fresh parsley and serve as you please!
Did you like this recipe?
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Borlotti Beans and Sundried Tomato Salad Recipe
600 gr Fresh Borlotti Beans (around 1 kg in their pods)
100 gr Sundried Tomatoes
2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2-3 Bay Leaves
1 Red Onion
1 piece Kombu (Kelp)
1/2 cup fresh Parsley
1 tbsp Oregano
1. Remove the beans from their pods, rinse the beans and place them in a pot with 1 liter of water, bay leaves and kombu seaweed. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 30 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow the beans to cool completely.
2. In the meantime soak the sundried tomatoes in abundant water.
3. Once the beans are cool, finely chop the red onion and sauté with olive oil, a pinch of salt and a splash of water in a large pan or wok.
4. Rinse the sundried tomatoes well, drain off the excess of water then chop them first in half lenghtwise, then cut each half into 4-5 pieces.
5. Add the tomatoes to the pan along with oregano and a few springs of thyme. Sauté all together for 5 minutes.
6. Finally add the borlotti beans (drained), around 1/2 cup of water, enough salt and pepper. Simmer one last time for 10 to 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow to cool.
7. Finish with freshly chopped parsley.
8. Serve this bean salad at room temperature or fridge cold, as a side, starter or main dish.