Here's a new version of beans on toast, combining creamy lima beans with crisp bacon, cottage cheese and mustard. Accompanied by a fresh salad, this makes a fabulous meal that is ready to serve in about 15 minutes.
To make the salad, put the oil, lemon juice and honey in a salad bowl and add pepper. Whisk together. Add the radicchio and lettuce to the bowl and set aside (do not toss yet).
Preheat the broiler. Melt the margarine in a large nonstick frying pan until it begins to sizzle. Add the bacon and green onions, and cook over medium heat for about 3 minutes, stirring frequently, until the bacon begins to colour and the green onions are just tender.
Add the arugula or watercress and cook for a few seconds, stirring, then add the lima beans, cottage cheese, mustard and pepper. Lower the heat and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly, until the mixture is hot.
While the bean and bacon mixture is cooking, toast the slices of bread under the broiler or in a toaster. Spoon the lima bean and bacon mixture onto the hot toast. Quickly toss the salad, and serve while the lettuce is still crisp.
Per serving: 350 calories, 21 g protein, 18 g fat (4 g saturated) 26 mg cholesterol, 26 g carbohydrate, 8 g sugars, 9 g fibre, 903 mg sodium.
Lima beans have a buttery flavour. They offer plenty of dietary fibre, essential for a healthy digestive system. Trimmed of fat, lean bacon is a high-protein, low-fat ingredient that provides particularly useful amounts of thiamine which is essential for maintaining a healthy nervous system.
Variations: For pinto bean and blue cheese Italian rolls, place 2 cans pinto beans, 540 ml each, drained and rinsed, in a saucepan with 80 g crumbled Gorgonzola cheese, 2 tablespoons plain low-fat yogurt and 2 tablespoons ricotta cheese (or 2 extra tablespoons yogurt). Heat very gently, stirring frequently, until the cheese melts and the beans are hot. Stir in 1 tablespoon sundried tomato pesto and serve on crusty Italian rolls, split in half and lightly toasted. You can accompany the toasted rolls with an Italian-style fennel and arugula salad. For the dressing, whisk 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil with 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice and pepper to taste. Add 1 thinly sliced fennel bulb, 80 g arugula leaves, 1 thinly sliced small red onion and 30 g pitted black olives, and toss just before serving with the Italian rolls.