What to eat this month

Yotam Ottolenghi’s Radish and Broad Bean Salad

This is an ideal brunch dish for a warm spring day. With the tahini sauce and bread, it makes a modest meal in itself; without them, a colourful salad – light, refreshing and wholesome. Here we come to the thorny issue of shelling broad beans. Many Arab recipes call for cooking and eating broad beans with their pods. This is recommended for young beans, early in the season, but wouldn’t work for a fresh salad like this one. Going to the next level – skinning the beans – depends on how large the beans are, how thick their skin, and how hard you want to work. Most beans, especially the ones sold frozen, are perfectly fine eaten with the skin on. So if you prefer to skip the skinning stage, cook them for a minute longer. You’ll lose a bit of the light, ‘bouncy’ texture but save yourself a lot of time.

The sauce should be thick but runny, almost like honey. Once chilled it will thicken, so you will need to whisk it again and possibly add more water.

What you need

Serves 4

  • 500g shelled broad beans, fresh or frozen
  • 350g small radishes
  • 1/2 red onion, very thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped coriander
  • 30g preserved lemon, finely chopped
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 200ml Green tahini sauce (see below)
  • 4 thick pita breads
  • salt and black pepper
For the Green tahini sauce
  • 150ml tahini paste
  • 150ml water
  • 80ml lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 30g flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped if making by hand


  1. Place the broad beans in a pan of boiling water and simmer for 1–2 minutes, depending on size. Drain through a large colander and rinse in plenty of cold water to refresh them. Remove the beans from their skins by gently squeezing each one with your fingertips.
  2. Cut the radishes into 6 wedges each and mix with the broad beans, onion, coriander, preserved lemon, lemon juice, parsley, olive oil and cumin. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. To serve, pile a mound of salad in one corner of each serving plate, pour the tahini sauce into a small bowl and stand it next to the salad. Set a pita bread next to them.
For the Green tahini sauce
  1. In a bowl, thoroughly whisk the tahini, water, lemon juice, garlic and salt together. The mixture should be creamy and smooth. If it is too thick, add more water. Stir in the chopped parsley, then taste and add more salt if needed.
  2. If using a food processor or a blender, process together all the ingredients except the parsley until smooth. Add more water if needed. Add the parsley and turn the machine on again for a second or two. Taste for seasoning.

Taken from Ottolenghi: The Cookbook (Ebury Press £25)