Southwest Salad with Black Beans and Corn Recipe
Ingredients:2 cups dried black beans
2 cups cooked corn
2 to 3 medium-sized cloves garlic, finely minced
A heaping 1/2 cup well-minced red onion
1 medium-sized red bell pepper, minced
1 medium-sized carrot, minced (optional)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (plus an
optional 1 to 2 tablespoons for the tortillas)
1/2 cup fresh lime juice (3 to 4 limes)
2 to 3 teaspoons whole cumin seeds
1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro
1/2 cup minced fresh parsley
1/2 cup minced fresh basil (if available)
2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
(adjust this to your taste)
A moderate amount of freshly ground black pepper
3 to 4 corn tortillas (optional)
Directions:Soak the beans for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight. Drain off any excess soaking water, place the soaked beans in a soup pot, and cover with fresh water. Bring just to a boil, then cover and turn the heat way down. Cook at a very slow simmer with no agitation in the water until the beans are tender. This should take 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours. Check intermittently to be sure there is enough water, and add more if necessary. When the beans are cooked, drain them well. Then rinse them thoroughly in cold water, and drain them well again.
In a large bowl, combine beans, cooked corn, minced garlic, red onion, bell pepper, optional carrot, salt, 1/2 cup olive oil, and lime juice.
Roast the whole cumin seeds, either in a cast-iron skillet over medium heat, stirring for several minutes, or very carefully in a toaster oven. Add the toasted seeds to the salad, along with the cilantro, parsley, basil, and red and black pepper, and mix thoroughly but gently.
Lightly brush both sides of each tortilla with olive oil, and cut the tortillas into strips approximately 1/4 inch wide and 1-1/2 inches long. Cook the strips slightly by toasting them in an oven (350 degrees) or a toaster oven for only about 2 minutes, or in a heavy skillet over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Ideally, they should be partly crispy and partly chewy. Stir these into the salad shortly before serving, or, if you prefer, scatter them on top as a garnish.
Serves 6 to 8
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