Mediterranean salad with creamy dreamy beans

Whizzing a tin of butterbeans, or any white beans, in the food processor with some good olive oil and sea salt entirely transforms something which can, frankly, be quite dull into utter heaven. Smooth and tasty, they make the perfect bed for crunchy salad vegetables or even some grilled peppers, tomatoes and onions. Beans are the future!
Serves: 2 • Prep time: 10 mins • Easy
  • 400g tin of butter beans, drained, not rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • good pinch of sea salt
  • large handful of baby tomatoes, halved
  • half a red onion, thinly sliced (pic shows a white onion, red better!)
  • 4 inches of cucumber chopped chunkily
  • half a yellow pepper, chopped
  • tablespoon more oil to drizzle
  • 1-2 tablespoons of white balsamic vinegar
  • a few leaves of fresh basil or mint
Tip the beans and 3 tablespoons of olive oil, and large pinch of salt, into a food processor and whizz until smooth.

Divide into two bowls and pile he salad stuff on top.
Drizzle with the remaining oil and the white balsamic, top with fresh herbs such as basil or mint.
Nutrition info
Though the term “superfood” is applied to many foods these days, beans really may be deserving of the title. They are technically a starchy vegetable packed with protein, low in fat and sugars – this can aid weight-loss as they keep us feeling fuller for longer. It has been proven that beans also decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes due to their low glycaemic index, thereby improving lipid and glycaemic control in diabetics. Their most famous attribute is the link between their consumption and lower levels of cholesterol which in turn reduces the risk of developing chronic conditions such as heart disease.

Beans, in general, are one of the only plant foods that provide a significant amount of the amino acid lysine, in addition to a wide range of antioxidants. It's important to get a variety of beans and legumes as each contain different and varying micronutrients; cannellini beans have more calcium; pinto beans score high in folate; and aduki beans, chickpeas, and butter beans are particularly high in iron. Most are packed with resistant starch, adukis are high in potassium, and red and black varieties are rich in disease-fighting antioxidants.

Make every day this delicious, get a weekly eatnaturally plan!

“Well, first of all," said the BFG, "human beans is not really believing in giants, is they?
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