It’s August in Ontario, meaning tomatoes, corn, and zucchini are at their best. This salad makes the most of our late summer harvest. We are adding crispy cranberry beans for a protein-packed crunch that is gluten-free, low fat, and delicious flavour. These addictive beans also make a great snack. I like to throw them into a bowl with roasted nuts and dried cranberries.
- 1 lb small zucchini (use both green and yellow if you can)
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice (from 1 whole lemon)
- 1 clove garlic, crushed but left whole
- 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup finely chopped herbs ( I like parsley and cilantro but feel free to use dill or basil)
- *2 tomatoes, halved and grated
- **Grilled corn kernels from 1 cob of corn
- ***2 cups Crispy Cranberry beans
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta
Crispy Cranberry Beans
- 1 19oz (540mL) can of cranberry/romano beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp za’atar or to taste
- 1 1/4 tsp chili flake
- Pinch of kosher salt
- 1 heaping tsp cornstarch or potato starch
*Cut the tomatoes in half and squeeze out some of the seeds. Grate the tomato on a large hole grater right down to the skin, eventually using the palm of your hand. The skin will protect your fingers, making it easier than you think. Put the tomato pulp in a bowl and set aside.
**Ontario corn is so tender that you don’t have to boil it. Remove the husks, throw them on a grill or pan, and char the corn, turning frequently. Let it cool and slice the kernels off and set aside. Do more than you need and freeze the rest if you like.
Slice the zucchini into very thin strips using a mandolin or a vegetable peeler. Salt with about 1 tsp kosher salt and let sit for between 15-30 minutes in a colander. Rinse the zucchini and dry it on a paper towel.
Mix lemon, garlic and oil and toss with the zucchini. Season with a pinch of kosher salt and plenty of black pepper, and leave in the fridge for 4-6 hours to soften the zucchini.
Remove the zucchini from the fridge and discard the garlic clove. Add fresh herbs and grated tomato pulp, tasting to see if you need more salt and pepper.
Make a mound of zucchini in a shallow bowl. Scatter the corn kernels over the zucchini and then top that with feta. Finish the salad with a generous handful of crispy cranberry beans and serve.
***Crispy Cranberry Beans
Preheat oven to 400
Pat beans dry on a tea towel/paper towel
Toss beans with olive oil
Mix the za’atar and salt with cornstarch in a small bowl and then add to the bowl of beans, mixing thoroughly.
Lay the beans out in a single layer on a parchment lined baking pan.
Bake the beans for 15 min, and toss before returning to the oven. Check every 5 minutes to see if they are crispy, and make sure they don’t burn. Remove from the oven and let cool.
Salad keeps for a day or two, but is best eaten the same day.
The crispy beans are best the same day, but you can store them in an airtight container at room temp for 2-3 days. Any leftovers make a great snack.