Tuscan Bean, Tomato and Bread Salad
A delicious and nutritious low-fat Italian-style bean, tomato and bread salad.
4 cups cubed sourdough or Italian bread (3/4-inch cubes)
Vegetable cooking spray (may be garlic- or butter-flavored)
1 cup packed basil leaves
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 to 2 tablespoons balsamic or red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons water
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 cups diced tomato
1 cup cubed cucumber
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 (15-ounce) can Great Northern beans or pinto beans, rinsed, drained
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- For Croutons: Generously spray bread cubes with cooking spray and toss; spray again and toss. Arrange bread cubes on jelly roll pan; bake at 375°F (190°C) until toasted, about 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside.
- For Basil Dressing: Process all ingredients in food processor or blender until almost smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use. Makes about 1/2 cup.
- For Salad: In salad bowl, toss tomato, cucumber, onion and beans with Basil Dressing; season with salt and pepper, add toasted bread cubes and toss again. Serve immediately.
Makes 4 main-dish servings or 8 side-dish servings.
- Bread may be prepared 1 to 2 days in advance; cool and store in airtight container at room temperature.
- Basil Dressing can be made 1 to 2 days in advance; refrigerate, covered.
- Any prepared basil or Italian dressing can be substituted.
Recipe provided courtesy of The Bean Education & Awareness Network.