At my new place, I finally have a little outdoor space and can actually grow fresh herbs – so exciting! (I have grown fresh basil indoors in sunny windows in the past, but it’s not the same…) – so now I have a little potted basil plant as well as fresh parsley and thyme growing on my balcony, all which feature in this recipe. This is a quick and super tasty salad you can throw together in just a few minutes to complement any number of wonderful Mediterranean-themed meals. Definitely an upgrade from those soggy canned three-bean salads of yesteryear.
I try to always keep a can of cannelini (white kidney) beans in the pantry because they are so versatile and recipe-friendly. Though hearty and filling, their flavor is very mild and unassuming, but this salad is quite lively thanks to a variety of aromatic fresh herbs and a little bit of purple onion for bite. Serves 2-3, but can easily be scaled up for larger crowds. Can be made 1 day ahead and pre-chilled, and will keep 1-2 days in the fridge.
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 tsp agave nectar
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/8 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- 1 can of cannelini (white kidney beans)
- 1/3 of a purple onion (or enough to make about 1/4 cup, chopped)
- 1/2 of a large sweet bell pepper (yellow, orange, or red)
- 5 large leaves of fresh basil
- 4-5 sprigs of fresh parsley
- 2-3 sprigs of fresh thyme
In a small mixing bowl, combine dressing ingredients and whisk together with a fork.
Drain and rinse the beans (it helps remove the excess foamy starch) and place in a salad bowl. Finely mince the purple onion and the yellow bell pepper and add those too.
Finely chop the basil leaves, mince the parsley, and pluck the fresh thyme leaves off their stems.
Add all the fresh herbs to the salad, splash on the dressing, and mix until well combined. Serve chilled. Enjoy!