VEGAN BEAN SALAD

I like to eat meat but have always thought about including more vegetarian and vegan meals within my diet.  Tomorrow is the first day of Lent and every year I make a commitment to myself to stay clean by not drinking, eating well and training.  I like to think that this is my period of reflection and sacrifice to myself and my time to focus on what I want with my life and how to make these happen.

This year, I thought I’d incorporate being vegetarian into this time too.  I have never not eaten meat or made a conscious to leave it out of my diet.  So for the next 6 weeks I am going to see if I can cut it out completely.  So, I am in the process of gathering some really great hearty vegetarian and vegan dishes to prepare for myself and my partner (who has also never been a vegetarian)

To start, here we have one of my favourite Vegan Bean Salad; great source of fibre, rich in antioxidants, but be careful… eating to much will make you ?

INGREDIENTS

2 (14oz) cans cooked red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14oz) can cooked chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 small red onion, diced
2 stalks celery, sliced in half or thirds lengthwise and chopped
1 ripe red tomato, chopped
1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded and diced
¾ cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or mint
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup lemon juice
3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
¾ teaspoon salt
small pinch red pepper flakes

DIRECTIONS

1. Drain, rinse and place red kidney beans and chickpeas into a big bowl. Add red onion, celery, tomato, cucumber, parlsey and mint and mix together.

For the salsa
2. Place olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and red pepper flakes in a blender or use a hand held one and pulse until smooth.

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