Monday, July 14, 2014

Summer Bean Salad with Chicken Sausage

Sigh.  We're at that time of the year when I forget the horrid winter and start looking forward to fall.  Oh DC, why must I live here and why must your summers be so brutal and disgusting?

With a generous seasoning of salt and pepper, a crazy amount of Tabasco sauce splashed on it, and a nice ice cold drink, this is one of my regular standby summer dishes that I make repeatedly throughout summer.  While you do need to use the stove for this, it's just to heat up some sausage.  The rest is so simple and easy, you can throw this together at the end of a workday as you try to ignore the sweat dripping down your back from the lovely commute in an un-air conditioned packed metro car and walk home in an atmosphere that can best be described as hot jello.  Better yet, make this the day before and refrigerate it so that you can dig into a nice and cool dish as soon as you get home.

Servings:  Original recipe says 10 servings and I laugh and laugh at that.  No, this is more like 3-5.  But it can be more servings if you use this as a filling for a sandwich or wrap.

1 15-oz can corn, drained and rinsed
1 15-oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 15-oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 orange bell pepper, diced
4 scallions, chopped
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 lemon, juiced
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
12 oz chicken/turkey sausage, quartered lengthwise and chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
Cooking spray or extra olive oil
Tabasco or hot sauce (optional)


  • In a large bowl combine a can of corn, a can of black beans, a can of kidney beans, a chopped orange bell pepper, and 4 chopped scallions.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together 3 tbsps olive oil, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, 1 tbsp Dijon mustard, and the juice from one lemon (if you want this extra flavorful, be very generous with the balsamic vinegar and Dijon mustard (adding maybe up to an extra 1/2 tbsp)).
  • Heat a large pan or skillet over medium heat and coat with cooking spray or a tbsp of oil.  
  • In the pan/skillet, cook 12 oz chopped chicken/turkey sausage for 5-9 minutes, or according to package instructions (choose a spicy sausage for some extra heat and flavor - I like Trader Joe's jalapeno chicken sausage).
  • Add the sausage and the oil/vinegar dressing to the corn and bean mixture and combine all ingredients until everything is well coated with the dressing. 
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste and add some splashes of Tabasco sauce or other hot sauce if you'd like more spice, which I always do!  Adds an extra vinegary punch too!
Now time for the pictures featuring my sad begging pugs!  Look at those sad twinkling lil eyes. 
Sorry girls, but this is not dog-safe.  Please don't cry Sunny!
A good sprinkling of fresh cracked pepper makes such a difference on so many dishes!  I also add Tabasco sauce to so so many of my dishes.  I am seriously addicted.
Put away those lil tongues girls!
You may sniff, but don't touch.  Or lick.  Or eat.
Ok ok I'll get a dog treat for you girls before I dig into this deliciousness!