What do you look for when you’re at the beach? Sea glass? Smooth white stones? Perfect seashells?
I love how at first glance a beach can look like pristine sand or a blanket of water-smoothed pebbles, but once you get down on your hands and knees there are SO many treasures and delights to be found.
I look for different things according to the beach I’m exploring.
When I lived in Portugal I found hundreds of teeny-tiny shells about the size of a lentil. I collected them and have them safe in a pretty glass jar.
In Italy and the Balkans I looked for smooth sea glass in shades of green, turquoise and blue. I have those bits in a different jar.
In Washington I always look for the shells that are like a purple watercolor inside, and display them in a pale gray dish on my coffee table.
After a long day of exploring in the wind and sun, I love coming home to something hearty and healthy with bright colors and flavors like this Black Bean Salad with Lime Dressing. It’s so simple to make if you don’t mind a bit of chopping.
Just drain and rinse two cans of black beans and add whatever diced fresh veggies you like. My favorites are sweet bell peppers (capsicum to my Aussie readers), sugar snap peas, and celery, with lavish amounts of fresh cilantro. Then I toss everything with a simple dressing of lime juice, olive oil, and a good, grainy mustard. I made it for the family I’m staying with and they cleaned up every morsel. 🙂
What are your favorite treasures from the beach?
Black Bean Salad with Lime Dressing
2-3 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
2-3 stalks celery, diced fine
1 red or yellow or orange bell pepper, diced fine
1 cup sugar snap peas, sliced fine
2-3 scallions, sliced
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup lime juice
1/4 cup olive oil
1 Tbsp grainy mustard
salt and pepper to taste
- Combine beans, vegetables and cilantro in salad bowl. Toss to mix.
- In small bowl combine remaining ingredients and whisk until emulsified.
- Add dressing to salad and toss to incorporate. Best eaten right away.