Mellow Great Northern beans are combined with delicate chunks of baked (or poached, or grilled) salmon and then topped with an intensely garlicky tomato and caper dressing for a punchy yet elegant entrée salad. I’ll be the first to admit, the tomato and caper salad dressing is the main event with this salad, coating each ingredient with a burst of savoury flavour that needs to be tasted to be believed. Double the dressing recipe and store in a jar in the fridge for up to a week (although, really, who are we kidding ourselves? It’ll be gone long before then) and use it to dress up a thinly sliced flank steak, a sweet corn salad, that boring tangle of greens you’ve been eating all week for lunch, scrambled eggs, chopped salads, sliced ripe or roasted tomatoes, that lone can of chickpeas that’s been sitting in your pantry for the past 6 months, or a pasta salad packed with marinated deli vegetables. I prefer a dressing with some body so I stick to finely dicing and mincing all the ingredients, but feel free to blitz it if you like a smooth result. I like to mix the Great Northern beans with about a half of the tomato and caper dressing before composing the rest of the salad, if only to make sure every single bean is coated with plenty of piquant flavour.
tomato and caper salad dressing:
1 medium tomato OR 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, cut into a small dice
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. capers, minced
5 fresh basil leaves, cut into a fine chiffonade
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. sherry vinegar
2 Tbsp. olive oil
Kosher salt and plenty of freshly cracked pepper, to taste
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix together with a fork, applying gentle pressure to really work together the tomatoes with all the other ingredients. Alternately, throw everything in a blender and blitz until smooth. Set aside to use for the salmon and Great Northern Bean salad or store in the fridge, covered, for up to a week.
salmon and great northern bean salad:
(makes enough for 2 people)
2 baked salmon fillets, cooled to room temperature and flaked into large chunks
1 can Great Northern beans, drained (mixed with half of the Tomato and Garlic Salad Dressing)
4 cups iceberg lettuce, mixed spring greens, etc.
About 1/2 cup thinly sliced cucumber
In a large shallow serving dish or over 2 plates, arrange the salmon fillet chunks and dressed Great Northern beans over a bed of lettuce, greens, and cucumber slices. Carefully portion the remaining tomato and caper salad dressing over the remaining salad ingredients and serve immediately.
When I hear !!! (Chk Chk Chk) I think of two things: that time when I was 19 and flew across the country (and into another country) and met my now-husband for the first time and stayed in his dorm room at the Evergreen State College for a week (I think !!! were on a Best of Pitchfork from the early 2000s we listened to throughout the entire visit). The other thought is less specific, it’s more of a “why am I not dancing my ass off at some amazing house party where !!! is playing?” The answer is usually, “oh right, I’m in my apartment alone, on a Tuesday afternoon.” Does this stop me from having my own personal kitchen dance party? Um, hardly! (I write, while somehow dancing at the same time).
!!! (Chk Chk Chk) – NRGQ