Today is my birthday for most other people it’s also valentine day! There are two sides to having your birthday on valentine’s day, the good side is that even when I was single it didn’t matter as I had family calling me all day and friends to go out with in the evening…the bad side is that every restaurant doubles its prices for this one night! They bring out set menus for ridiculous cost and we’re the only table set for more than two people in the whole place!
So we mostly stay in for my birthday but this year were heading down to Brighton to celebrate! I’m really excited and I decided to make one of my favourite salads for the train journey down there. I know this is a very summery salad considering we have fresh snow on the ground this week but I’m feeling impatient with the seasons, I need some bright fresh colours in my life!
I love beany salads because they are really filling, full of fibre and you can really mix in anything you like! You can use any beans you like but my choice is kidney beans and Canellini beans again, mixing different colours makes it more interesting.
I didn’t slow roast these tomatoes because I didn’t have time, to slow roast you heat the oven to around 110c and leave them in the oven for 2 1/2 hours. This creates an intense sweetness and chewiness to the tomatoes. Instead I whacked the oven up to high and popped these beautiful tomatoes in for around 15 – 20 minutes! They stay juicy but just burst when you touch them and you still get the sweetness coming through.
The tomatoes become the sauce for this salad because when you mix them into the beans they burst and dress everything in a gorgeous tomato juice.
Mixed bean and roasted tomato salad
Wheat and gluten free, vegan, birthday worthy!
4 large vine tomatoes
10 cherry tomatoes, assortment of colours
Dried italian herbs
1 can kidney beans (drained)
1 can Canellini beans (drained)
1 stick celery
1 red chilli
Extra virgin olive oil
Pre heat the oven to 200c
Slice all the tomatoes in half and place them cut side up on a baking tray then sprinkle with salt, dried italian herbs and pour a drop of balsamic onto the larger tomatoes.
Place in the oven for 15 – 20 minutes.
Dice the cucumber quite small and slice the red chilli and celery and mix in a big bowl, add the cooked tomatoes and using a fork gently squash the tomatoes to release the juice and mix everything together really well. Top with shredded fresh basil, sliced chillis, a drizzle of olive oil and a splash of balsamic vinegar!