BPA in cans. Arsenic in apple juice. Say No to GMO’s! Corn Syrup is evil. Sugar is evil’s cousin. For me, in the craziness of motherhood and my brain’s incredible ability to be at full-capacity pretty much 99% of the time, I sometimes feel that I am physically incapable of digesting any new information. Pathetic, huh?
Side story… My brother used to watch “Married with Children” constantly, much to my mother’s chagrin. Al Bundy was disgusting to her, pretty much standing for exactly the opposite of everything she and my father believed and tried to instill in us kids. But he watched it religiously, and I am pretty certain that he has seen every episode. Anyhow, in one particular episode, Kelly Bundy was smart for some reason. Well, Bud was helping her to pass some test. But there was a graphic, as she was learning new information like e=mc2, things like her name, her birthdate, her home address were being pushed out of her brain to make room for the intellectual stuff. Well, to make a long story short, sometimes I feel like Kelly Bundy — between politics, research on educational stuff for my kids, worrying about the future for my kids, work stuff, my own goals and aspirations, trying to give my family a balanced diet amidst all the GMO horror, I feel like my brain is going to explode. 🙂
So when I feel like I am mentally capable, I try to make the healthiest, informed choices for my family and me. At a party recently, I had a really delicious bean dip. And I was all set to make something like it when my brain began to actually apply some of the floating information. I decided to make the dip, but not use anything canned and try to use as much non-GMO products I could access easily. I’ll be honest, breadmaking is actually 10x easier than accomplishing this feat, but I did… And it is delicious. (disclaimer: if you make this, and I hope you do, but you decide to use canned beans, I WILL NOT JUDGE YOU. It was stinking hard not to use the canned stuff… It’s so convenient and saves soooo much time. Just replace all the beans with 1 can.) 🙂
- 2 ears of corn, shucked
- 1/2 C. dried cannellini beans (or one can)
- 1/2 C. dried black beans (or one can)
- 1/2 C. small white beans (or one can)
- 1/2 C. black eye beans (or one can)
- 1-2 jalapeños, finely diced (adjust according to how spicy you like it)
- 1 clove garlic, grated (if you have a zester or hand grater, it works perfectly. If not, just use a press)
- 1 small red onion, finely diced
- 1/2 large red pepper, finely diced (or one small)
- 1/3 C. olive oil
- 1/3 C. red wine vinegar
- 1 T. sugar
- juice and zest of 2 limes
- 1 1/2 tsp. salt (if you are using canned beans, only use 1 tsp.)
- 1 tsp. black pepper
- 1/2 tsp. cumin
- 3 T. parsley, minced (could sub cilantro)
To rehydrate and cook the beans. Place beans in separate bowls and cover with twice the amount of boiling water. Cover and let sit for 4 hours (yes, excruciating). Another disclaimer: I have never done beans in this way. I researched a ton, but modified the process a little. This is the way that worked for me but I am by no means an expert.
After the 4 hours, drain water and place beans in a large pot, cover with 2-3 times the amount of liquid. Bring to boil and then reduce to simmer and cook for 45-60 minutes. Drain, rinse with cool water and set aside.
Grill the corn. Shuck the corn and remove all silk. Place corn on grill preheated to high and cook for a total of 10 minutes, turning every 3 minutes to char each side. At this point, resist the urge to devour the corn now. You may want to make an extra ear because the smell of it is so irresistible. It took every fiber of my being not to slather it with butter and salt and gobble it all down. And I would have, but then I would have had to go back out for more corn and I didn’t feel like doing that. 😦 Cut corn from cob.
In a large bowl, combine olive pil, vinegar, lime juice and zest, garlic, sugar, salt, black pepper, cumin and parsley. Combine. Add beans, red pepper, jalapeño, onion, and corn. Stir thoroughly.
Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight for best flavor. Serve with your favorite corn chip. Would also be a fantastic, low fat topping for salad in place of dressing.