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Baby Spinach and Navy Bean Salad with Classic Balsamic Dressing

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    Baby Spinach and Navy Bean Salad with Classic Balsamic Dressing

    This is a much “meatier” version of a simple salad. The greens provide folate and vitamin C, the beans provide protein and fibre, and the walnuts provide essential fats. Topped with a delicious dressing that can be used for all kinds of salads, this dish will become a nutritious regular in your cooking repertoire. Feel free to substitute ingredients as required. Almonds and pecans can substitute for walnuts, and chickpeas or even lentils can substitute for the beans. A 1/4-cup (60-mL) serving of nuts may improve cardiovascular health, and beans provide fibre, which is important to help detoxify the liver. Use a digestive enzyme from a natural foods store if digesting beans is a problem for you. Most people over age 60 benefit from using these enzymes with main meals.

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    1 8-oz (250-mL) bag baby spinach
    1 cup (250 mL) navy beans, cooked and rinsed
    1/2 cup (125 mL) walnuts
    1 small red onion, thinly sliced or chopped

    Dressing:

    1 clove garlic, crushed or chopped
    1/4 cup (60 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
    1 Tbsp (15 mL) balsamic vinegar
    2 Tbsp (30 mL) lemon juice
    1 tsp (5 mL) sea salt
    1 tsp (5 mL) natural sugar

    On a large dinner plate, arrange spinach and top with navy beans, walnuts, and onion. In small jar, mix together dressing ingredients and shake well. Pour over spinach salad and serve immediately. If you plan to use leftover salad later, keep salad dressing separate and apply just before serving. Serves 2.

    source: "Suppers for Savvy Seniors", alive #276, October 2005

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    Baby Spinach and Navy Bean Salad with Classic Balsamic Dressing

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