Thursday, June 17, 2010

Another Summer Salad

This week I pulled out another salad recipe from my summer arsenal. This recipe combines crusty wheat bread with feta cheese, basil, balsamic dressing, and tomatoes. The surprise in this recipe is the edamame. I clipped this recipe from Better Homes and Gardens quite a few years ago, and I have to admit that I didn't even try it until last summer. The combination of ingredients didn't really appeal to me at first. But out of necessity last summer to make something with some leftovers, I pulled out this recipe and gave it a try. I was so impressed! First of all, the feta, yogurt, and basil spread that goes on the bread is divine. I can eat it by itself with crackers. Then the sweet bite of the tomatoes and crunchiness of the beans really takes it up a notch. Definitely give this recipe a try soon!

3/4 cup feta cheese
1/2 cup Greek yogurt or plain low-fat yogurt
2 Tbsp. snipped fresh basil
1 small clove garlic, minced
2 12-oz. pkgs. frozen soybeans (edamame)
1-1/2 lbs. fresh green beans, trimmed
1 recipe Balsamic Dressing, below
2 cups yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
12 slices crusty country bread, toasted
Fresh basil leaves

In bowl combine feta cheese and yogurt. Using fork mash into paste. Add basil and garlic, mash to blend. Season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate, covered, up to 8 hours.
In saucepan bring 8 cups lightly salted water to boiling. Add soybeans and green beans; return to boiling. Reduce heat and cook, covered, 6 to 8 minutes or until tender. Drain; cool. Prepare Balsamic Dressing.
Add tomatoes to bean mixture. Drizzle 1/2 of dressing; toss to coat. Refrigerate, covered, up to 8 hours. Toss before serving.
Spread feta mixture on bread slices; place slice on serving plate; mound bean mixture on top. Drizzle remaining dressing; sprinkle basil.

Balsamic Dressing:
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons each balsamic vinegar and red wine vinegar
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, lightly packed
2 tablespoons whipping cream

In blender combine first 5 ingredients; blend until smooth. Add cream; blend to mix. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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