I came across this lovely salad on Heidi’s beautifully photographed blog, 101 Cookbooks, and I’ve been aching to make it ever since. See, I love dill. It’s one of those things that I actually carry on my lap on the way home from the farmer’s market so I can pick it up, hold it to my nose and just breathe it in…all the way home! Now I know that most people associate dill with things like salmon and potato salad, but in my household growing up, we had it with tuna. Only tuna. That was it. So to this day the first thought that comes to mind when I see big bunch of dill at the market is, “Gee, I could really go for a big ol’ tuna sandwich!” So of course, we flaked a little tuna on top of this salad for our dinner. How could I resist?
This is my adaptation of Heidi’s delicious salad. Her rendition includes a little brown sugar or honey for a touch of sweetness, but I found it was a little too sweet for me. Click on over there to see how she does it.
I used the little pebble-sized Navy beans, but you could use any white bean….or any other bean for that matter!
My version of Heidi’s Bean, Carrot and Dill salad
- 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
- juice of 2 lemons
- 1 bunch of young (but not toooooo small) carrots
- 3 Tablespoons roughly chopped fresh dill
- 2-1/2 cups cooked white beans
- 1/3 cup chopped, toasted almonds
- extra-virgin olive oil for dressing the salad
- pure olive oil for cooking the carrots
- kosher or sea salt, to taste
Toss the red onion with the juice of one lemon, and a good pinch of salt and allow them to macerate for about 30 minutes, while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
Give your carrots a taste. If the skin is bitter, peel them. But if not, leave the skin on…there are lots of nutrients in there! Slice them into 1/4-inch thick rounds and saute them in a large saute pan in a single layer over medium heat. Toss them only every few minutes so that their surfaces become lightly browned. And don’t forget to give them a pinch of salt as they’re cooking.
Pour the beans and the dill right into the saute pan, along with the carrots. Cook them over medium-high heat until they are warmed through. It’s okay if they begin to brown slightly in spots. It adds a delicious dimension of flavor!
Place the macerated onions into the bottom of a large bowl. When the beans and carrots are ready, pour them on top of the onions. Give the whole mixture a gentle stir, and squeeze in the juice of one more lemon along with a few glugs (2-3 Tablespoons?) of extra-virgin olive oil. Allow the salad to sit for about 20-30 minutes so that the flavors begin to marry. Taste, and add salt if necessary.
Just prior to serving, toss in the toasted almonds.