A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned the TV show, "Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat," and how educational and inspiring it is. Well, today's post is a continuation of that praise. In the last episode, Chef Samin discusses the importance of heat. Heat is what allows you to cook food, but how you manipulate that heat can help perfect your dish. In the last segment, she prepares a roasted vegetable and bean salad that had me drooling from start to finish. I knew I had to replicate this dish. Here is my adaption of her beautiful creation with roasted cauliflower, carrots, romanesco, Brussels sprouts, simmered beans, and a tangy shallot vinaigrette.
Roasted Vegetable and Bean Salad
- 1 cup navy beans dried
- 3 cups water
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ head cauliflower cut into ½ inch steaks
- 1 head broccoli cut into ½ inch steaks
- 1 bunch carrots about 8, halved lengthwise
- 1 lb brussels sprouts trimmed and halved
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 3 large shallots finely chopped
- ½ cup red wine vinegar
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon za'atar seasoning divided
- ¼ cup fresh dill
- ¼ cup fresh parsley
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro
- 4 ounces crumbled feta
- Maldon salt
- Rinse beans in cold water. Place in a medium bowl and cover with 2 inches of cold water. Let soak at room temperature at least 8 hours or overnight. Drain beans and place in a medium sauce pot with 3 cups water, olive oil, salt and bay leaves. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, uncovered. Reduce heat and simmer on medium-low heat for about 45 minutes or until beans are fork tender. Keep warm.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Toss all vegetables in olive oil. Arrange on baking sheets, using separate baking sheets for each of the vegetables. Season with salt and pepper. Roast for 25-30 minutes or until vegetables are caramelized and fork tender.
- Make the shallot vinaigrette. Add shallots and vinegar in a small bowl. Slowly drizzle olive oil, whisking constantly. Season with salt and pepper.
- Pick fresh dill, parsley, and cilantro, discarding stems. Toss all together to make an herb salad.
- Season beans with 1 teaspoon za'atar seasoning, 2 tablespoon shallot vinaigrette, and ¼ cup of the cooking liquid from the beans. Season with salt and pepper.
- Assemble vegetables and beans. Plate cauliflower and broccoli steaks followed by the carrots and Brussels sprouts. Season with za'atar seasoning. Top with the beans, and crumbled feta. Drizzle shallot vinaigrette, top with fresh herb salad and finish with a sprinkle of Maldon salt. Serve warm.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
This roasted vegetable and bean salad seems so simple but it actually takes a little bit of work. The first step is to soak the beans. Soaking dried beans helps remove the indigestible sugars and also helps cut the cooking time two-fold. Cover the beans with 2 inches of water and let them sit for at least 8 hours or overnight.
If you forgot to soak the beans and need a quick solution, cover the beans with 2 inches of water and bring them to a boil. Boil for 2-3 minutes, cover, take it off the heat, and let it sit for 1 hour.
Once the beans have soaked, they are ready to be cooked. Flavor the cooking liquid with olive oil, salt, and bay leaves. The cooking liquid will be re-used to season the beans later so you want to add some seasoning.
Once the skins start to peel, the beans are ready! At this point, you may be thinking, why go through all the trouble? I could just go to the market, buy canned beans, and skip all the hassle. The difference is the taste. Freshly prepared beans are just infinitely better; so creamy, so good.
Drain the cooked beans and reserve some of the cooking liquid. Season the beans with shallot vinaigrette, za'atar, and the cooking liquid and keep warm until ready to plate.
Next comes the roasted vegetables. All you have to do is cut the vegetables, toss them in oil, salt and pepper, and roast. Ideally, you want to place each type of vegetable on a different sheet pan. Each vegetable cooks at a different pace so you want to be able to remove the ones that are ready when it is the proper time.
Make the shallot vinaigrette and fresh herb salad and you are ready to plate. First the vegetables, a little za'atar, then the beans, feta, vinaigrette, fresh herbs, and Maldon salt. As I said, there are many components but they work beautifully to complement one another.
I'll admit, I wasn't aware of who Chef Samin was until I saw her show, but I have a true admiration for her skills. This roasted vegetable with bean salad, without a doubt, one of the best vegetarian dishes I have tasted. It is the star of the meal; even my meat-loving husband ate the entire platter! Bring this epic roasted vegetables and simmered beans dish to your table and trust me, you will wow your audience.
For more salad inspiration check out this grilled apricot couscous salad!