Arugula salad with lime-cilantro dressing, spicy black beans, & grilled corn

This meal was inspired by my desire to use fresh veggies from my CSA share and local legumes and corn. I also want to start focusing on making my own dressings for salads.

Using inspiration from several different lime-cilantro dressings I found online, I came up with this recipe. It makes approximately 1/2 cup of dressing.

Lime-Cilantro Dressing

2 TB freshly squeezed lime juice (about 1/2 of a lime)
2 TB balsamic vinegar
2 TB olive oil
1 clove fresh garlic (chopped)
1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
handful of fresh basil (about 4 leaves)
salt & pepper to taste
1 tsp agave (optional)

Put all of the ingredients into a standalone blender or use an immersion blender to mix and liquify all of the ingredients together in a tall glass or container. Mix desired amount (I used about half) into salad. Toss and serve immediately.

Lime-Cilantro Dressing
Drizzling the lime-cilantro dressing onto the arugula salad

The arugula salad was simple to make and all ingredients came from our CSA share this week.

Arugula Salad
4 cups fresh arugula
2 carrots (sliced)
1 cup cherry tomatoes
2 TB toasted pumpkin seeds (optional)

Wash and rinse the arugula. Allow it to drain in a colander or use a salad spinner. Scrub and rinse the carrots and slice thinly. Remove stems from cherry tomatoes and wash. Put arugula, carrots, and cherry tomatoes into a large bowl. Toast the pumpkin seeds for a few minutes in a small skillet on the stove until they start to plump up. Remove from stove top. Toss the salad with the lime-cilantro dressing (1/4 cup will suffice). Plate the salad and add the pumpkin seeds on top.

The blend of spicy arugula with the citrus dressing was a healthy and sublime combination. The toasted pumpkin seeds also gave it an added crunch and kick.

Arugula salad

Spicy Black Beans
4 cups of black beans (I used dried beans, but canned will also suffice)
1 large onion (chopped)
1 jalapeno (diced)
chili powder to taste
hot sauce to taste (I used Frank’s Red Hot)

If using dried black beans, you’ll need to soak them overnight and cook with water (plenty to cover them and then a couple more inches) for at least 2 hours before you want to use them. Alternatively, you can use canned black beans. When the beans are softened after cooking in water (if using dried beans), add the onion, jalapeno, and chili powder. Cook until most of the water is gone and the onion and jalapeno have softened. Serve and add hot sauce on top for added spice.

We also enjoyed this meal with local grilled corn. We always leave it in the husk for a smoked feel. We grill the corn approximately 15-20 minutes on a low flame on our gas grill. This is a great meal focusing on beans, greens, and grains (our favorite combination). Bon appetit!

Arugula salad, spicy black beans, and grilled corn