Three beans, sweet peas, asparagus, butter beans and pecans with a coconut-lime dressing. YES! Don’t mind if I steal Allison Day‘s gorgeous photo as my lead photo. It is just too pretty to bury inside my post.
This is a fun summer salad that is perfect for your next gathering or more simply, your next meal.
The beans and asparagus are quickly steamed, just barely, to reduce their raw edge without becoming too soft or limp. This works well next to the creamy butter beans and soft, sweet peas with everything swimming in a generous dousing of a coconut-lime dressing.
While it will be a while until I can harvest my own asparagus, I thought you might be curious to see what my 1-year old asparagus plant looks like after it was planted (not even) 3 weeks ago. They shoot up so fast and now it has made it into the fern stage. Definitely too thin to harvest, but I knew that was the case. A squirrel ate one plant when it was still small, so I hope they don’t eat any more as they continue to grow.
This recipe comes from Allison Day’s debut cookbook, Whole Bowls, which is a gluten-free and vegetarian cookbook filled with all sorts of bowls. I have been following Allison at her blog, Yummy Beet, for a while and was so happy when I heard her had a new cookbook. This girl knows how to make gorgeous, plant-based meals. As a nutritionist, Allison made sure the recipes were approachable to even the novice cook, nutritionally balanced, delicious and beautiful.
She even included a nice template for creating, or recreating, your own bowls:
- 1/2 cup cooked grains (such as brown rice or quinoa)
- 1/2 cup protein (such as chickpeas or tofu)
- 1 to 2 cups non-starchy vegetables (such as kale, spinach or grilled peppers)
- 1/2 to 1 cup starchy vegetables or fruit (such as roasted sweet potatoes, grated carrots or berries)
- 2 tablespoons to 1/4 cup of condiments or sauce to tie it all together (such as vinaigrettes or a tahini dressing)
- 1 to 2 tablespoons of a crunchy garnish on top (such as roasted nuts, chopped herbs or croutons)
Allison also knows the benefit of keeping things flexible, and even breaks her own rules. This salad is perfect even without a grain component.
This is truly a gorgeous cookbook which inspires you with many mini-recipes for complete meals. Black rice coconut porridge with toasted coconut and pineapple for breakfast. Southern grits with tomatoes, kale and black beans for brunch. In the salad chapter I am tantalized by Patio bowls with sweet potato wedges, grilled lettuce and sticky BBQ tempeh, South of the border bowls with walnut meat and grilled avocado, and curried falafel with kale salad.
Entree whole bowls include Bohemian bowls wth chili squash and tahini dressing, Holiday bowls with stuffing, sweet potato latkes, Brussels sprouts and balsamic glaze, vegan pho with delicata squash and enoki mushrooms, carrot risotto with rice of the prairies, vegan mac and cheese with smoked tofu and baked tomatoes.
Last but not least (although it is moe skewed towards vegetarian than vegan), we have dessert bowls including The Big Bowl of Cookie Dough (vegan of course, because you eat it before you bake it!), vegan peach buckwheat crisp and Mexican chocolate pudding.
In short, I look forward to cooking through this cookbook and I think you will too. The recipes are very vegan-friendly, simply swap for plant-based versions of yogurt, mayonnaise and cheese.
Thankfully, the publisher allowed me to giveaway the cookbook to a reader living in Canada or the United States. To be entered in the random draw for the book, please leave a comment below telling me what you like to eat in your own bowls. The winner will be selected at random on June 15, 2016. Good luck!
Recipes from Whole Bowls spotted elsewhere:
Three-Bean Garden Salad with Asparagus and Coconut Dressing
Reprinted, with permission, from Whole Bowls
Author’s note: My mom was an expert gardener, and try as I might, I’m personally a bit clumsy in this area. Each year I make promises to myself and do manage to come out with a few edibles, but really shouldn’t quit my day job, if you know what I mean. Whether you grow and harvest the vegetables for this salad yourself, the flavors in this gorgeously green bowl do all the heavy lifting and tilling to cultivate a freshly picked garden taste. (Bonus: no dirty fingernails or back spasms).
For the Salad
1/2 pound green beans, tough ends removed, cut into 1-inch pieces on a bias
1/2 pound wax (yellow) beans, tough ends removed, cut into 1-inch pieces on a bias
1 pound green or white asparagus, tough ends removed, cut into 1-inch pieces on a bias
2 cups cooked butter beans
1/2 cup fresh or frozen, defrosted green peas
1/2 cup roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped (see page 206) [note: I used pecans]
For the Coconut Dressing
1 cup coconut milk (thick, canned)
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2–3 teaspoons sea salt [note: I used 1/2 tsp]
ground black pepper, to taste
1. Make the Salad: Steam green and wax beans until tender-crisp (3–5 minutes). Immediately run cold tap water over beans to preserve color and cool down. Steam asparagus according to bean directions. Dry as much water off steamed beans and asparagus as possible with a clean dish or paper towel.
2. Make the Dressing: In a small bowl, combine all dressing ingredients.
3. To Serve: In a large salad bowl, toss all salad ingredients with desired amount of dressing (you may have extra). Serve.
Salad (dressed): 3 days.
Coconut Dressing: 1 week.
Recipe and photo from cookbook from Whole Bowls by Allison Day (Skyhorse Publishing; April 2016)
Note: I was given a copy of the cookbook from the publisher. I was under no obligation to share a review. The opinions expressed are entirely my own.
Contest Rules: No purchase necessary. Contest period begins Saturday, June 4 2016 and ends Wednesday, June 15, 2016. For American and Canadian residents only. Approximate retail value US$24.99. Enter by writing a comment answering the prompt for a chance to win. Entrants must supply a valid email address. Winners will be notified by email and must respond within 48 hours.