I'll never forget the first time I ate edamame. It wasn't until somewhere around 2001. I was living in New Orleans at the time and went for lunch with a co-worker at a local Chinese restaurant. It was buffet style, so when I saw the edemame, I wanted to try it and added some to my plate. What I didn't know at the time was that the pods are NOT like a sugar snap. I made the mistake of popping the whole thing in my mouth and trying to chew it. When the girl I was eating with stopped laughing, she explained that I needed to pop the beans out of the pod.
I liked them, and know they're good for you, so I added them to my regular rotation of snacking veggies. That's how I usually eat them, shelled or not - as a snack. Once in a while, they'll make an appearance as a side dish, but it never occurred to me to use them in a salad until I saw the Edamame Bean Salad posted on The Apron Archives the other day.
There aren't many beans that I like, so I didn't follow that particular recipe, but it made me want to try one of my own. I do like Northern Beans. They don't have that gritty texture that some other beans seem to, and they have an almost buttery flavor, so I opted to use those. For contrasting texture, I decided to include bean sprouts as well. Everyone really enjoyed it, so I'll definitely be making this again. It's super easy, and definitely a healthy dish.
12 oz bag mukimame (shelled edemame)
8 oz bag fresh English peas
1 can Great Northern beans
1 can Garbanzo beans (chick peas)
1 small red onion
Mung bean sprouts
White balsamic vinegar
Salt / Pepper
Both the mukimame and the peas had instructions for steaming them right in their bags in the microwave, so I cooked each for half the time recommended, tossed them together in a bowl and let them cool.
While those are cooling, go ahead and rinse the chick peas and beans and set those aside to drain while you chop a handful of cilantro and thinly slice your onion.
Toss all of the above in the bowl along with a good amount of bean sprouts - I didn't measure, just poured in what looked like a balanced ratio, then drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, squeeze in the juice from one lime, and season with salt, pepper, and cumin to taste.
FYI - I did end up adding more lime juice the next day, so you might want to have two on hand if you try this.
Not from a taste perspective, but just as a visual note, I think when I make it again, since the Northern Beans and Garbanzos are the same color, and the peas and mukimame are the same color, I think I'll throw in a little yellow or orange bell pepper for color.