Friday, May 1, 2009

K.A.T.E.S. Avocado & Bean Salad

Kidney beans Avocado Tangerines Evaporated milk Salsa

On March 30, 2009, I issued a recipe challenge to myself:
Come up with recipes using only ingredients that start with the letters that spell out my name K + A + T + E + S (the first initial of my last name to give me a total of 5). Oil, salt and pepper do not count.
Here's the first recipe in the challenge:

Avocado & Bean Salad with Creamy Salsa Dressing
It's important to use shelf-stable bottled salsa for this, because the refrigerated salsas are too watery.

And if I hadn't set this challenge for myself, I probably would have used sour cream, yogurt or mayonnaise instead of evaporated milk in the dressing.

2 cups dried kidney beans, soaked overnight if possible
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3/4 cup bottled medium salsa
3 tablespoons canned evaporated milk
4 tangerines
1 Hass avocado, cut into cubes

1. In a medium saucepan, combine the beans, salt, pepper and water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, reduce to a low-boil, partially cover and cook until the beans are tender (40 minutes to 1 hour plus, depending on if you've soaked ahead or not).
2. Meanwhile, in a blender or mini food processor, puree the salsa. Grate the zest from half of one tangerine and stir into the salsa.
3. Drain the beans and transfer to a large bowl. Add 1/4 cup of the salsa mixture to the hot beans and stir to coat. Let cool to room temperature.
4. Stir the evaporated milk into the remaining salsa, add to the beans and toss to coat.
5. Peel the tangerines and cut into 1/2-inch chunks. Add the tangerines and avocado to the beans, and toss to coat. Taste and add more salt if needed.

Makes 4 servings

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