When you have lettuce and tomatoes in your CSA share, dinner is not far off! Usually during August my family eats a lot of this salad. We customize it based on our weekly CSA share, and layer everything in a big salad bowl and serve it family style. For this vegetarian version I cooked our onions and bell peppers with a can of black beans. For a lot our recipes we cook beans from dry in a pressure cooker, but keeping a can of beans on hand for quick dinners is always a good idea.
Week 10 of our CSA Shares also included fresh cilantro. The bunches of fresh herbs in our CSA are usually much larger than those found in a grocery store. One way I like to use them up is mix chopped herbs directly into the lettuce for salads. It makes for a really flavorful salad. Add the cilantro to the salad spinner and wash the cilantro and lettuce together.
Cook the black beans on the stovetop, while they’re simmering you can chop the other veggies, and grate the cheese. I top this salad with slivers of fried corn tortillas, but you could also serve it with quesadillas or tortilla chips. With all of the ingredients layered together, this salad doesn’t really need dressing. Serve it with lime wedges to squeeze over the top. If you absolutely can’t consider eating salad without dressing, a light tasting vinaigrette will work.
Black Bean Taco Salad
1 head lettuce
1 large tomato
1/2 bunch cilantro bunch, chopped
For the black beans:
1 can or 2 cups cooked black beans, drained and rinsed if canned
1/4 cup water
1/2 large onion or 1 spring onion, diced
1/2 large green pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
Optional: 1/2 hot peper, like serrano, seeds removed, minced
1 tablespoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
grated cheese or queso fresco
2 tortillas, cut into strips, and fried until crispy
1 lime, cut into wedges
Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until translucent. Add spices and green peppers and continue to cook until peppers soften, about 5 minutes. Add black beans and water, and simmer for about 10 more minutes. Remove from heat and taste. Add salt if necessary.
Wash lettuce and cilantro. Spin dry in salad spinner, and place in a large bowl or on a large platter. Dice tomato and grate cheese.
Cut tortilla into strips. Heat about 1/4 cup olive or canola oil in skillet. Fry tortilla strips in batches until crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
Layer black beans, tomatoes, and cheese over lettuce. Top with fried tortillas, and garnish with limes.