February 16, 2012

Pinto beans and yellow squashes with green dressing


This is true colour therapy! These gorgeous yellow squashes are from my trustee farmer, Giulia, whose amazingly fresh, organic produce I've become slightly addicted to in the past months. I go see her at the markets every Friday morning and whilst shopping, we talk about the weather (mostly the rain this past season), the food politics in Australia, and everything in between. It's truly a perfect way to start the weekend. 

The best way to enjoy any fresh vegetables and fruit is, in my opinion, raw or very lightly steamed. On daily basis I tend to eat 80-90% raw - and the last 10% usually consists of beans, grains or lentils.
This dish combines so many flavours and is wholesome, filling and packed with protein! 


Pinto beans and yellow squashes with green dressing
(serves 2)

200g raw pinto beans, soaked in water overnight and cooked until tender*
7-8 small yellow squashes
2 green shallots, finely sliced
4-5 stems of kale, sliced into strips
2-3 tablespoons hemp seeds, toasted

Green dressing

2 small broccoli, chopped
1/2 avocado
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
pinch of salt
freshly ground black pepper

* always discard the soaking water and use fresh water to cook the beans! This reduces the sugar content in the beans and makes them easier to digest. 

1. Lightly steam the yellow squashes and cut into small slices. Combine the cooked beans, squash, shallots and kale in a large bowl. Toss well to combine.

2. Steam the broccoli until tender. Place the broccoli, avocado, lemon juice and olive oil in a blender and puree until smooth. Add water and blend again to reach a dressing-like consistency. Season the mixture with salt and pepper.

3. Coat the beans and the greens with the dressing, and sprinkle on the hemp seeds. Let the flavours to develop for half an hour before serving.