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Low Fat High Protien - Four Bean Salad for vegans

Updated on September 30, 2010

A Healthy Salad Made From A Variety Of Beans

A mixture of beans, healthy you say. Yes, as beans are an excellent source of protein and therefore contain most of the essential amino acids or those building blocks that your body needs for growth and sustained good health.

In South Africa, which is still very much a farming type of community, where the culinary prowess of the daughters in the family, are held in great esteem, and this still adds to her dowry in most of the far flung districts.

So when you stumble upon such a gem, that can make the traditional "BOONTJIESLAAI" (bean salad) with the tastiest dressing or "SOUS", that has you reaching for a "VETKOEK" to wipe the last drops of dressing from the bottom of your plate. Then you know you have found a gem of a woman.

These recipes very seldom see the light of day in print, as the are passed from generation to generation, eldest daughter to eldest daughter.

See Vetkoek for the recipe, no "BRAAIVLIES" (BBQ or cookout) is complete without it.

This is the Chick Pea version - not the Red Bean
This is the Chick Pea version - not the Red Bean

Traditional Four Bean Salad - Boontjieslaai

For a family of 4 to 6 people. The traditional way of making this, many many years ago, would have been, a cup each of the following beans:-

Dried Broad Beans - Soaked overnight and slow cooked until soft and tender, but still in their skins.

Red Haricot Beans - Soaked overnight and again slow cooked until they to are soft and remain in their skins.

Small White Kidney Beans- Soaked overnight and slow cooked in a sauce. This sauce is made up of tomato and onion and seasoned with salt and pepper, thickened with a bit of cornflour. The beans are cooked together until soft and tender and still in their skins.

Runner Green Beans - Cut into sections of an inch in length, then cooked until they are just soft.

All the beans must be left to cool down to room temperature.

The beans, with the exception of the beans in the tomato sauce, are then drained and transfered to the serving dish. Mixed together carefully but not broken up or mashed.

The beans and tomato sauce are then carefully combined with the other beans.

A note of caution there must not be too much tomato sauce, otherwise the taste of tomato would overpower all the other subtle flavours.

Special Notes

The above process would not only be the Naturopathic way but as wells those who of you who are strictly organic.

For the rest of us, who enjoy a salad, and either do not have the time forthe drawn out preparation process or simply cannot be bothered to go through that long drawn out proceess.

Then here is the modern mans way of doing things, as it quick and easy style of preparing it.

If you want to save even more time in the preparation department. Then put the cans in the refrigerator unopened of course, and leave them overnight, then all you have to do is the opening of the cans follow the recipe, and serve>

Modern and Quick


1 can Butter Beans in brine, drained

1 can Baked Beans in tomato sauce - Do not drain

1 can Red Beans in brine, drained

1 can Green Beans in brine, drained


Combine all the beans in a mixing bowl. Place in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, so that are nice and cool.

Making Of The Dressing


15ml (1 Tablespoon) of Castor sugar

2 - 5ml (1/2 -1 teaspoon) of mustard powder, depending on taste

15ml (1 Tablespoon) of Virgin Olive Oil

60ml (4 Tablespoons) of white wine vinegar or cider vinegar

5ml (1 Teaspoon) of freshly chopped Basil or Coriander, Oregano

Freshly ground black or mixed pepper to taste.


Mix all the dry ingredients together in a small bowl, add the vinegar and oil, then whisk all the ingredients until all the sugar has dissolved.

Remove the bowl of beans from the refrigerator and combine the dressing to the beans. Mix well and return to the refrigerator to rest for an hour.

There is your 4 Bean Salad.

The Tasty Twist To This Traditional Dish

This is for those people who enjoy that special nutty taste and crunch of Chick Peas.

Substitute the Red Beans for Chick Peas. Then again if you really want to as this is your salad, don't substitute, just add a tin of drained chick peas to the bowl.


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    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      5 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Hi Karen, I think that over the week, compared to the previous, possible had 3 more than the preceeding week however I think that some of those hits wondered around some of the other hubs, so it maybe a long term spinoff.

      Well we try and see over the next week/s ahead.


    • Karen Ellis profile image

      Karen Ellis 

      5 years ago from Central Oregon

      Hi Rodney, I didn't see where my own hubs I pinned got too many more hits, so am figuring that perhaps your rusk hub didn't either. Well, it was worth a try, anyway.

    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Thanks for the comment Dan, enjoy,

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Beans are not only healthy they are also tasty.

    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Jaye, thanks for the gem of information about the Eden cans, I try and use the Italian products as they have been practising "organic methods" without certification tradionally.

      Will look out for the Eden Cans.

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 

      7 years ago from Deep South, USA

      Great hub, great recipe, and I'm glad to see the Amazon links because I didn't know they sell Eden organic canned foods. I've read that Eden's cans are the only brand that does not have harmful chemicals in the can lining. Thanks!


    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Candle62, Thanks for reading the hub and enjoying the content, much appreciated.

    • candle62 profile image


      8 years ago from London

      this looks so healthy and delicious thankyou.

    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      10 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Beans are a fatastic food group, Thanks for your comments.

    • evemurphy profile image


      10 years ago from Ottawa

      I have beans in one form or another everyday and find them almost the perfect food. Thanks for this! :)

    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      10 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Constant, I think I had a gremlin on this page, I was sure that I replied to your comment, So I will say it again.

      Try the salad with Chick Peas, they are more nutty in texture, and add a crunch.

      Sixty, if the wind factor is a problem, then fine grind a bit of fennel and add it to the beans when they stand in the refrigerator.

      Thanks for the comments.

    • sixtyorso profile image

      Clive Fagan 

      10 years ago from South Africa

      I need to bookmark this one, but I fear the wind factor after the enjoyment

    • Constant Walker profile image

      Constant Walker 

      10 years ago from Springfield, Oregon

      Rodney, I have tried... and tried... to like beans because I know what a "super-food" they are, but I just don't. I think it has to do with their texture.

      Good hub, though!

    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      10 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Yes Mulder Broad and butter beans are also a favourite of mine.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    • mulder profile image


      10 years ago from Warnbro Western Australia

      I love Beans of any kind especially boadbeans Great hub JustRodney

    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      10 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Hi there Karen, Firstly, Castor sugar is a very fine sugar, not as fine as Icing sugar, you can make your own castor sugar by putting normal sugar through a food processer.

      Secondly 'The Great SA Cookbook, is being released slowly page by page, here for all on the Hub Pages. Yes once I have them all I will get an EBook, and make the full set available, comments and all.

      Sascha, you give the receipe to your girlfriend and I am sure you will enjou the results. As for recognising some of the words, I am sure you will as Afrikaans is derived from 'Hoog Hollands", the grammer is different and some of the meanings of words, too are slightly different.

      Mariesue, yes beans are one of the best forms of protien, and also easier to digest than red meat.

      Thanks all for the comments.

    • marisuewrites profile image


      10 years ago from USA

      Yum this looks so healthy and delicious. Beans, a perfect food! =))

    • Sascha H profile image

      Sascha H 

      10 years ago from The Netherlands

      This looks absolute very healthy. I'll give the receipt to my girlfriend ;-) I also recognized some dutch words in it. So it must taste very good!

    • Karen Ellis profile image

      Karen Ellis 

      10 years ago from Central Oregon

      Hi Rodney,

      Castor sugar??? Haven't heard of this in the states. Is there a substitute that could be used? When are we going to see the "Greatest South African Cookbook"

    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      10 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Yes Trsmd, it is really a healthy one, especially changing the Red Beans to the Chick Peas as they give another of the amino acids.

    • Trsmd profile image


      10 years ago from India

      this is really A HELATHY ONE..

    • Just_Rodney profile imageAUTHOR

      Rodney Fagan 

      10 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Thanks for that, Princessa, it is indeed a develishly good salad, quick and easy or the long winded ultra healthy way.

    • Princessa profile image

      Wendy Iturrizaga 

      10 years ago from France

      This looks delicious and very nutritious. I need to try it.


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