If you are a chef at Flour, as in most kitchens, you don’t really have an office. You have a station, usually near the stove or the oven, that you call yours, and when people need to talk with you they hover at your station until you have a free moment between searing off this and marinating that.
Chef Aniceto’s station is in the center of our kitchen at Flour 3, and I often find myself perched there as I observe the bakers, prep cooks, counter staff, and customers. It’s an ideal spot to see it all. That’s where I watched him come up with this gorgeous fresh summer salad that he was serving as a side for his fried chicken dinner special. The
three-bean salad that I grew up with was typically a drab conglomeration of canned green
beans, floppy yellow beans, and mealy red kidney beans in a sharp dressing. This one is something else altogether: crisp fresh beans, earthy blackeyed peas, radishes and carrots for color, and potato for soaking up all of the lemony, herby vinaigrette.
- Yield: 4 Servingsas a main course or 6 to 8 as a first course
- 0.66 cup (120 g) dried black-eyed peas, or one 15-oz (430 g) can black-eyed peas
- 8 oz (225 g) wax beans, trimmed and halved crosswise
- 8 oz (225 g) green beans, trimmed and halved crosswise
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 large russet potato, unpeeled and cut in half crosswise
- 5 radishes, trimmed and thinly sliced
- 4 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh dill
- 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh tarragon
- 6 tbsp (90 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- If using dried black-eyed peas, place them in a medium bowl or other container, add about 6 cups/1.5 L water, cover, and refrigerate overnight. The next day, drain and rinse the peas. In a medium saucepan, bring the black-eyed peas and about 6 cups/1.5 L fresh water to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 1 to 1½ hours, or until the peas are tender. Remove from the heat, drain, and set aside. If using canned black-eyed peas, drain, rinse under cold running water, and set aside.
- Fill a large saucepan with lightly salted water and bring to a boil. While waiting for the water to boil, fill a large bowl about half full with ice and then add cold water just to cover the ice.
- Add the wax beans and the green beans to the boiling water and boil for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the beans are barely tender and still a bit crunchy. Using the sieve, remove them from the boiling water and plunge them, sieve and all, into the ice bath. Drain them well and place in a large bowl. Bring the water back to a boil, add the carrot, and boil for about 1 minute. Scoop the carrot out of the boiling water with a sieve and plunge, sieve and all, into the ice batch. Drain well and add to beans.
- Bring the water back to a boil, add the potato, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until cooked through.
- While the potato is cooking, add the blackeyed peas, radishes, scallions, dill, parsley, and tarragon to the beans and carrots and stir together gently with a wooden spoon. Drizzle the vegetables with the olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, salt, and pepper and stir again with the wooden spoon until well mixed.
- Using the sieve, remove the potato from the boiling water. While still warm, cut the potato into 1-in/2.5-cm chunks. Add the potato to the vegetables and mix well. (Taste and add more salt and pepper and red wine vinegar as needed.) Serve warm or at room temperature.