Redemption Salad 2.0

The first time I introduced you to Redemption Salad, I was coming down from eight days of indulgence: pizza! beer! donuts! pizza! 

Not to be outdone by my past self, the inspiration for Redemption Salad 2.0 comes from near-equal levels of indulgence packed, this time, into a single meal. 


A few weeks back, my pal Dayna offer to make dinner for me, my sister and her family. What followed was not so much a supper as a feast: four giant pizzas topped with, among other things, homemade mascarpone cheese, pesto and fresh mozzarella. Chocolate cake. Chocolate pie. Orange sherbet. Bubbly drinks. 

lettuce-beans.jpgAnd then, there was this little salad: A three-bean variety dressed with cumin, lime juice and cilantro. 

ingredients-text.jpgWholesome and fresh, it was the perfect foil to the decadence of the pizza. Which isn’t to say that we necessarily ate less pizza because of it. In fact, without bites of salad between slices to refresh us, I reckon we would have had no choice but to stop a slice earlier than we did. But that, I propose, is a virtue in its own right: A salad that saves you from the regret of turning down a slice of incredible homemade pizza, fresh from the oven.

final-salad.jpgHowever, if you take a more traditional view of the virtues of salad, you won’t be disappointed: In addition to increasing your appetite for pizza, this salad also increases your stores of fibre, healthy fats, and so on. Plus, it comes together in just a few minutes, which means you can start filling yourself with good stuff, stat. 

Redemption Salad 2.0
Adapted liberally from Gourmet, and put onto the idea by Dayna 
Makes ~5 cups 

Note: To make the salad more meal-worthy in its own right, I served it with a slice of toasted no-knead bread. You could also use it as a catch-all veggie taco filling, serving it in warmed tortillas and topping it with a bit of plain yogurt.   


1 cup of frozen soy beans out of the shells
1 cup of cooked black beans (drained and rinsed, if canned)*
1 cup of cooked white beans – like navy or cannellini beans (drained and rinsed, if canned)*
1/4 cup mildly-flavoured oil (like olive oil or vegetable oil)
3-4 tbsp lime juice
1 clove of garlic, minced or finely grated
1 1/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp cumin
Pepper to taste 
2 cups loosely packed romaine
1 avocado, peeled, pitted and cut into bite-sized cubes
1/2 cup moderately packed cilantro leaves, finely chopped 


1. Cook soybeans in a small pot of lightly salted boiling water (3-4 cups) until tender, about 4 minutes. Drain and rinse briefly under cold water to stop them from cooking.

2. In a large bowl, mix together the soy beans, black beans, white beans, oil, 3 tbsp lime juice, garlic, salt and cumin. 

3. If you’re making the salad to eat in the next 24 hours: Stir in the chopped romaine, avocado pieces and cilantro. Taste and add more lime juice and salt as necessary. If you’re planning to eat the salad over a few days, your best bet is to add these three veggies just before you serve up each time – their texture and flavour are much better when they’re fresh! 

4. Serve it up! Store extras in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. 

ingredients-text.jpg*In both cases, I used dried beans rather than canned. To cook dried beans: Cover them in 2 inches of cold water and soak in the fridge overnight. The next day, drain the water off and cook the beans in a large pot of lightly salted boiling water for 15-30 minutes, or until tender (sturdier beans will need more time). Drain, rinse, and that’s it! Extra beans can be stored in an airtight container or bag for a few days in the fridge, or in the freezer for up to a year. 

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