Herby Butter Bean and Tomato Salad


I am, if not fanatical, then certainly evangelical when it comes to pulses.  For years I have raved and enthused about lentils, chick peas, cannellini beans and the like (please note there are recipes for all of the above on these pages).  Now it is the turn of butter beans to be my true favourite.  I say now but in fact many, many years ago in a shared house one popular communal supper was a combination of butter beans, tuna, spring onions and a lively vinaigrette.  So, whilst that particular recipe isn’t a current favourite, it seems pulses have long been popular in my life.  These days pulses are all the rage and readily available in jars which is my preferred choice.  Until recently jarred beans were the preserve of delis and Spanish shops but not only are they on the shelves of most supermarkets now but can also be delivered to your door which is how I found myself with a monthly subscription to Bold Beans.

Owing to this regular arrival of beans I have upped the pulse game Chez May and we eat a lot of them although that we doesn’t include my son who says he has been over pulsed and needs a break.  Endless winter suppers have been bolstered and padded out with these beans and now it is the turn of our summer salads to be pulsified.

The recipe that follows couldn’t be easier, in fact it is barely a recipe.  It utilises half of a batch of my fresh herb sauce (July 2013) but I recommend you still make the whole amount as you will certainly find a use for the other half*.  This is a salad with some backbone which is always useful, nothing to go particularly limp here so it can be made ahead of time and, in fact, is still good the next day so ideal for lunch boxes.  It can easily be scaled up so handy for summer lunch parties.  Above all though, it is the work of minutes and truly delicious.

Herby butter bean and tomato salad

1 700g jar butter beans, drained and rinsed (usually around 500g net)

1/2 batch fresh herb sauce (July 2013)

1 large handful of cherry tomatoes halved

Chopped chives (optional)

Mix the butter beans with the herb sauce and tomatoes.  Put into a serving bowl and scatter with the chives if you are using them.  Serves two for lunch or more people if there are other dishes alongside.


*If you have lots of tomatoes, simply slice then and serve with some of the leftover fresh herb sauce spooned over.  This makes a wonderful summery tomato salad and you can easily add some sliced mozzarella which is also delicious and looks fabulous.

Please excuse the really not very good photograph.


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