One of the best things about summer food is the abundance and variety of fresh greens and the rich, sweet taste of vine ripened tomatoes, but grazing on salad greens won’t satisfy most of us. Here’s a recipe that combines summer bounty with flavorful, healthy eating. It relies on black beans to supply protein and nutrients and uses steak as a condiment rather than the main course. For the carnivores among us, add as much or as little sirloin as you like.
- 1 cup black beans
- 2 quarts water
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ½ medium red onion, diced
- ½ bunch scallions, chopped
- Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
- 1 to 1½ pounds grilled sirloin tips
- 4 cups mixed field greens
- 1 cup chopped vine-ripened tomatoes
To prepare the beans:
(Best if done a day ahead)
1. First spread the dry beans out in a shallow roasting pan and pick through them carefully. You want to remove any small stones, bits of clay, or other non-food material.
2. Put the beans in a sieve and rinse them under running water for 1 or 2 minutes.
3. Place the rinsed beans in a medium bowl with enough water to cover them, and soak for a few hours or overnight.
4. After soaking, drain, and rinse again.
5. Place the beans in a pot with two quarts of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and then simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until tender. This should take about 90 minutes or less.
6. Drain and refrigerate for later use. You should have about 2½ cups of cooked beans.
To assemble the salad:
1. In a large bowl, mix together the mustard, lemon juice, seasoning, olive oil, red onion, and scallions. Add the beans and toss to season well. Refrigerate for a least one hour.
2. Grill sirloin tips to your preferred level of done ness. For this salad, we think medium rare is best. Slice into strips.
3. Place a handful of field greens on each plate and top with a generous amount of the chilled black bean mixture. Lay a few strips of sliced sirloin over the beans and top the steak with chopped tomatoes.