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Watermelons and Beans

The abundance of watermelon this month makes me think of summer. Warm nights, days at the beach and especially BBQ’s with family and friends. I thought of all the different items found at the food bank and how to come up with a one-stop shop recipe for all the ingredients. In my passion for beans, I devised a healthy and refreshing Watermelon and black bean recipe that would have some versatility…add corn and jalapeno and make it a salsa to put on top of grilled steak or chicken. Chop up spinach or romaine and make a salad drizzled with a molasses balsamic vinaigrette. You’re only as limited as your imagination!!

WATERMELON AND BLACK BEAN SALAD

½ seedless watermelon, cut into small cubes
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed well
1 medium red onion, diced
2 jalapeños, seeded and ribs removed, minced
¼ cup chopped cilantro
3 – 4 tablespoons lime juice
pinch of salt, to taste
Chopped spinach or romaine
Molasses & Balsamic viniagrette (recipe below)

Instructions:
1) Toss all ingredients together in large bowl
2) Chill for 2 hours
3) Serve on top of lettuce
4) Drizzle with dressing (molasses-balsamic vinaigrette is a fab option, easy to make and lasts a long
time in the fridge)!

Molasses & Balsamic Vinaigrette
Makes 1 cup

¼ cup of molasses
¼ cup of balsamic vinegar
¼ cup of olive oil
1 ½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Instructions:
Place all of the ingredients into a jar with a lid and shake it, shake it, shake it! Let the vinaigrette stand for 2 minutes before dressing your salad.

WATERMELON, BLACK BEAN AND CORN SALSA

Makes 4 cups

1 (14.5-oz.) can corn, rinsed and drained
1 (14.5-oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 small red onion, chopped
1 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
1 clove garlic, minced or 1 tsp garlic powder
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or 1 tsp dried coriander
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoons mild chili powder
Juice from 1 fresh lime
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt to taste
2 cups chopped seedless watermelon

Instructions:
1) Place all ingredients except watermelon in a medium bowl. Gently mix to combine. Chill.
2) Just before serving fold in watermelon. Transfer to a bowl or serving dish.
3) Serve with corn tortilla chips or on top of grilled chicken or bbq steak

So let’s all celebrate summer and a healthy life style without breaking the bank with this fun-in-the-sun recipe! Stay tuned next month when we will feature more of my favorite – beans!!

~Chef Maria Sparks

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