Radiatori with flageolet beans in tomato dressing

    35 min

    When beans and pasta are eaten together, the vegetable proteins combine to provide as good a source of protein as meat. Here, tender flageolet beans partner chunky pasta shapes in a salad with celery, red pepper and canned artichoke hearts. A well-flavoured dressing marries the ingredients perfectly.

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    Serves: 4 

    • 225 g (8 oz) radiatori (pasta grills) or other hallow shapes
    • 1 can artichoke hearts, about 400 g, drained and quartered
    • 4 ripe tomatoes, skinned and cut into thin wedges
    • 3 celery sticks, thinly sliced
    • 1 red pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips
    • 1 can flageolet beans, about 400 g, drained and rinsed
    • 2 tbsp finely shredded fresh basil
    • Tomato dressing
    • 2 tbsp sun-dried tomato paste
    • 1 garlic clove, crushed
    • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 2 tbsp lemon juice
    • 1 tsp caster sugar
    • salt and pepper

    Prep:35min  ›  Ready in:35min 

    1. Cook the pasta in boiling water for 10–12 minutes, or according to the packet instructions, until al dente. Drain the pasta thoroughly and turn it into a large bowl.
    2. Add the artichoke hearts, tomatoes, celery, red pepper, flageolet beans and basil. Gently toss the pasta and vegetables together. The cold vegetables will cool the pasta, keeping the pieces firm and separate, while the warmth of the pasta will bring out the flavours of the vegetables.
    3. Whisk all the ingredients for the dressing together until thoroughly blended. Add seasoning to taste and pour the dressing over the salad. Lightly toss the salad to coat all the ingredients with dressing, then set aside until cool. Transfer the salad to individual bowls or one large dish to serve.

    Some more ideas

    Try canned soya beans instead of flageolet. These small, firm and nutty beans are an excellent source of vegetable protein. * Omit the tomatoes, and instead add a quartered and thinly sliced bulb of fennel. Replace the flageolet with cannellini beans. Add 55 g (2 oz) finely shredded Italian salami to make a meaty main course salad. * Marinate 225 g (8 oz) button mushrooms with the basil in the dressing for at least 2 hours before making the salad, then add them instead of the canned artichoke hearts. Add halved cherry tomatoes instead of the large tomatoes, and omit the celery.

    Plus points

    Flageolet beans are high in protein and low in fat, and they also provide useful amounts of vitamin B1 and iron. Along with other beans and pulses, they are a good source of dietary fibre, particularly soluble fibre, which can help to reduce cholesterol levels in the blood and thus lessen the risk of heart disease.

    Each serving provides

    A, C * B1, B6, niacin, iron, potassium * E, copper, selenium

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