Serves 6 to 8 as a starter
1 cup dried small white beans, such as cannellini or Great Northern, or 1 15-ounce can
1 clove garlic
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon chopped shallot
1 cup snow peas or sugar snap peas
1/2 bunch fresh chives, chopped
5 mild radishes, such as Lady Slipper radishes, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1. If you’re using dried beans, first rinse them, picking out any stones, and place in a bowl. Cover with cold water and soak for 8 hours, or overnight, then drain the beans and place in a pot. Add the garlic and bay leaf and enough water to cover the beans by at least 1 inch. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, cover, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the beans are tender, about 1 hour.
2. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, honey, and shallot. Whisk to combine.
3. When the beans are done, drain them well and place in a medium bowl. Discard the bay leaf and garlic clove. Add one third of the vinaigrette to the warm beans and toss; then let stand for 15 minutes, tossing occasionally. If using canned beans, rinse and drain them, then toss with the vinaigrette.
4. In a small pot of boiling water, cook the snow peas or sugar snap peas for 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, place them in a bowl of ice water. Drain, pat dry, and slice thin.
5. In a large salad bowl, place the cooled beans, snow peas, chives, radishes, and basil. Pour the remaining dressing over and toss lightly. Serve immediately.
– Recipe by White House Chef Sam Kass