We’re coming upon the eve of the Fourth of July, and if you haven’t already gone to the grocery store to stock up patriotic groceries and libations, you might be thinking about going. July is hot, though, and if you’re like me and don’t have a grill, you’re also probably looking for ways to avoid turning on the oven. Even if you have access to a grill, it’s likely that you seek reprieve from the heat outside, too, and hope to spend as little time as possible in the kitchen, even without the oven on. Filling your belly with watermelon is a good solution, but one can’t survive on watermelon alone. Let me introduce you to the solution to your problems: three bean salad.
Three bean salad truly takes a minimal amount of effort to prepare, and the ingredients are already in the pantry. It’s tasty while being light and healthy. It’s your savior for a last-minute dish for your Fourth of July celebration.
I make three bean salad to take to everything– cookouts, pizza parties, the 4th of July, lunch. It’s difficult to get tired of it.
And although I truly love this all the time, it particularly shines at a cookout. Its pickle-like freshness complements burgers, barbecue and grilled chicken perfectly. It gets better as it ages, so it’s ideal to make the salad one or two days before you plan to serve it. You can fix it, forget it, and enjoy your time sitting on a porch in a rocking chair (how I plan to spend my 4th). Three bean salad is a staple in my kitchen during the summer months, and I’m sure you’ll join the bandwagon, too.
¾ cup plus 3 teaspoons granulated sugar
1 ½ teaspoon table salt
1 ½ teaspoon black pepper
1 cup distilled white vinegar
½ cup olive oil
1 small green pepper, chopped
½ medium yellow onion, chopped
1 15 ounce can red kidney beans, rinsed
2 14.5 ounce cans wax beans
2 14.5 ounce cans cut green beans
1. Whisk sugar, salt, pepper, vinegar and oil in a large bowl until combined.
2. Add green pepper, onion and all beans to the brine; mix well. Let the flavors meld in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours before serving; it is even better after a couple days in the fridge.