When I first began eating a plant-based diet, I did not know what to eat. This recipe was one of my dietary staples. It’s quick easy, versatile, and delicious. You can serve this salad over a bed of lettuce for a light lunch. You can serve it over rice for a more filling meal. You can wrap it up in a tortilla and eat like a burrito. At the clinic, I would serve this salad, kale salad, guacamole, cilantro rice, pico de gallo and homemade baked corn chips as a healthy buffet.
2 cups cooked black beans, use canned beans or see the black bean recipe below
1 cup fresh organic steamed corn
1 cup chopped tomatoes
1/4 cup red or orange bell peppers, diced
1/2 of red onion, diced
1/2 bunch of organic cilantro, finely chopped
pepitos, queso fresco and avocados for garnish, optional
2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce**
Juice of two small limes, approx 2 tbsp
6 tbsp olive oil
1 clove of garlic
1/2 tsp honey
1/4 tsp salt
Drain and rinse the black beans in a colander until the water runs clear. Set the colander in the sink to drain. Place the chopped tomatoes in a small bowl add a splash of olive oil and a pinch of salt and stir. Set the tomatoes aside to marinate while you chop the remaining ingredients and make the vinaigrette. Wash and chop cilantro, dice the onions and bell peppers.
For the vinaigrette, place all ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth. Taste the dressing and adjust as you deem appropriate. Depending on how juicy the limes are, you may need another lime or you might find that the dressing is too acidic from too much lime juice in which case you would add a touch more honey. The goal is to create a balance between the flavors: the acidity (lime juice), the savory (salt), the heat (chipotle and garlic), and just a touch of sweetness (honey).
Place all the salad ingredients in a bowl. Drizzle with a tablespoon of dressing. The vegetables will lose some juice, so the dressing will go a long way.
You can serve this salad over a bed of lettuce, a kale salad, a bed of rice, quinoa or simply spoon it into a bowl.
Garnish with fresh avocado, pepitos, and queso fresco for a beautiful presentation.
Chipotle Black Beans
I grew up eating pinto beans. Since deciding to eat plant-based, I have explored other options and these are one of my favorites.
1 cup uncooked black beans
2 chipotle peppers from a can, I use San Marcos brand.
3 cloves garlic
1/2 white onion
1 tbsp cumin
1 tsp salt
Be sure to clean and rinse the beans. Soak beans overnight. Just place them in a ceramic bowl, cover them with water, and let them sit out overnight. I cover them with a plate or dishtowel just to make sure nothing falls into my soaking beans.
Drain and rinse the beans the next day. Fill a pot with enough water to cover your beans. Add the soaked beans, onions, chipotle, garlic, and other spices. Cook for about 45 minutes or until well done. While they are cooking you will want to check in on them periodically.