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Herbed Mixed Bean Salad with Peppers

This recipe celebrates the food of Toulouse, where Jean-Christophe Royer studied economics. During the summer, hearty local bean dishes, like cassoulet, give way to lighter recipes, like this salad.

Plus: More Vegetable Recipes and Tips

  • Servings: 10

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  • 1 1/2 cups dried speckled beans (3/4 pound), such as borlotti, soaked overnight
  • 1/2 cup dried black beans (4 ounces), soaked separately overnight
  • 2 quarts chicken stock or canned low-sodium chicken broth
  • Salt
  • 2 1/2 pounds fava beans, shelled (about 1 1/4 cups)
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 red bell peppers, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1 green bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice 1 medium onion, minced
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped chervil
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped tarragon
  • 4 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Drain the beans that have been soaking overnight. In a medium saucepan, bring 5 cups of chicken stock, 2 1/2 cups of water and the speckled beans to a simmer over moderate heat. In another saucepan, bring the remaining 3 cups of stock, 1 cup of water and the black beans to a simmer over moderate heat. Cook the beans until tender, adding water when needed to keep the level of the liquid 1/2 inch above the beans. The speckled beans will take about 2 1/2 hours and the black beans about 1 hour. Season with salt. Drain the beans and put them in a large bowl.
  2. While the dried beans are cooking, blanch the shelled fava beans in boiling salted water for 1 minute. Lift them from the boiling water with a slotted spoon, chill them in ice water and drain. Pinch the favas out of their skins. Return them to the boiling water and cook until just tender, about 4 minutes. Drain the favas and add them to the beans in the bowl.
  3. In a medium skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the bell peppers and cook over moderate heat until beginning to soften, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the peppers to the beans in the bowl.
  4. Add the onion, cilantro, chervil and tarragon to the beans. Whisk the remaining 6 tablespoons of olive oil with the vinegar and mustard; season with salt and pepper. Toss the bean salad with the dressing and refrigerate until chilled. Check the seasoning before serving.
Contributed By Photo © Hotze Eisma Published June 2000

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