Three Bean - Arugula Salad with Grape Leaf – Mint Pesto
My photo doesn't do this wonderful salad justice! We were experimenting at Committee, the restaurant in Boston where I am consulting chef, and this winter salad of three types of beans and a Greek-inspired Grape Leaf pesto is the delicious, healthy result! To find some of the artisinal Greek products you'll need to make this, visit my online shop here, where you'll discover a host of lovingly curated Greek ingredients.
- 2 cups cooked Greek giant beans
- 2 cups cooked black-eyed peas
- 2 cups cooked cannellini beans
- 2 cups trimmed baby arugula
- 1 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 4 scallions trimmed and finely chopped
- Grated zest of one lemon
- For the pesto
- 12 brined grape leaves drained, blanched and trimmed
- 1 cup fresh mint leaves
- 4 garlic cloves peeled and chopped
- 2/3 cup toasted pine nuts or toasted blanched almonds
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2/3 cup extra virgin Greek olive oil or more as needed
- To cook the beans, soak them overnight then boil separately. Remove when tender but al dente and drain.
- Rough-chop the grape leaves and place in a food processor with blade attachment. Place the mint, garlic and nuts in the bowl of the processor, too. Pulse until the mixture is a dense paste. Gradually add olive oil, until the resulting sauce is thick but liquid. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Combine the beans, arugula, chopped parsley, scallions and lemon zest in a serving bowl. Pour in and toss the pesto. Serve immediately.
To garnish the salad, you can take a whole grape leaf and deep-fry it. It's delicious crunchy!