Roman-style bean salad is one of the first resources you should bear in mind when you need to prepare a fast dish that is delicious as side but that also works as great unique dish! This is something more than a recipe, this is a real ace in the hole for us cooking lovers. Many characteristics make this bean salad great : it this a dish full of color and flavor, it is easy to make, it doesn’t take too much time to prepare and, thanks to the presence of beans, it is source of many nutrients!
Yes, this bean salad is a very substantial dish which proposes the typical and rustic flavor of the kitchen of the capital and can be done in a very simple way. To season the beans, we will prepare a mixture of of extra virgin olive oil, chopped anchovies, garlic, thyme, pepper and onion flavored in red wine vinegar.
The beneficial properties of this Roman-style bean salad
For this recipe I am using both cannellini – the long, slightly kidney-shaped, white beans so much used in Tuscany – and borlotti beans – also known as roman bean, a variety of the cranberry bean bred in Italy.
As I previously mentioned, beans are really rich in nutrients and vitamins. Rich in carbohydrates, they also provide a good protein intake but guarantee low fat content. Beans also contain a lot of fiber and important amounts of iron, potassium, calcium, and vitamins A, B and C. From a nutritional point of view, the presence of licitine helps to prevent accumulation of fat in the blood – which keeps the cholesterol levels low l. The high presence of fibers, on the other hand, helps your digestion.
This legume, though, can not be consumed raw as it contains, in fact, the phytohemagglutinin (PHA), which comes from a class of proteins called lectins. Those last ones are present in most of the common plant foods, but some of them are toxic. Once cooked, however, the effect is neutralized and you can enjoy all their benefits.
For convenience, I used the canned ones, as they require minimal preparation – you just need to drain and rinse them. Dried beans instead need to be soaked in cold water for around 6/7 hours, then you have to drain and rinse them, put them in a pot full of abundant boiling water and let simmer for at least 1 hour.
If you want to enrich the salad with extra elements, you can add slices of pancetta or guanciale (sauteed, of course). I almost never do because it is rich enough for me in its basic essence but if you have guests it might be nice to add an extra touch. On the contrary, if you are vegetarian – in that case, disregard my first tip – and you can’t eat anchovies, you can substitute them with capers, it will be great, I promise! 🙂
Roman-style bean salad – Insalata di fagioli alla romana
14 oz (400 gr.) canned beans
1 red onion
8/10 anchovies in olive oil
a sprig of thyme
1 glass red wine vinegar
5/6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 clove of garlic, peeled
As first step, finely slice the onion. Put it in a bowl and pour the red wine vinegar. Leave it to rest for around half an hour.
In the meantime, prepare the dressing for the salad : finely chop the garlic clove and the anchovies, then add them to the olive oil and complete with the thyme leaves.
Drain the beans, rinse them quickly with cold water and drain well. Transfer into a bowl.Transfer the onion slices in the same bowl together with the beans.
Season with the sauce you previously prepared, add 1 extra tbsp of vinegar and stir with a spoon to amalgamate. Add salt and freshly ground pepper and serve.
Roman-style bean salad
A very nutrient and tasty bean salad enriched with red onion, anchovies and seasoned with olive oil and red wine vinegar!
- 14 (400 gr.) oz canned beans
- 1 red onion
- 8/10 anchovies in olive oil
- a sprig of thyme
- 1 glass red wine vinegar
- 5/6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 clove of garlic, peeled
- Step 1 As first step, finely slice the onion.
- Step 2 Put it in a bowl and pour the red wine vinegar.
- Step 3 Leave it to rest for around half an hour.
- Step 4 In the meantime, prepare the dressing for the salad : finely chop the garlic clove and the anchovies, then add them to the olive oil and complete with the thyme leaves.
- Step 5 Drain the beans, rinse them quickly with cold water and drain well.
- Step 6 Transfer into a bowl.
- Step 7 Transfer the onion slices in the same bowl together with the beans.
- Step 8 Season with the sauce you previously prepared, add 1 extra tbsp of vinegar and stir with a spoon to amalgamate.
- Step 9 Add salt and freshly ground pepper and serve.