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The festive season is as usual a busy time for entertaining. For my friends and family it tends to be a busy time too, so giving them a foodie gift is always a welcome treat. These three lovely salads presented in beautiful dishes are I think lovely gifts that anyone would be happy to receive.


Mixed Bean Salad

Bean salad 1a


1 can, (100g) cooked butter beans

1 can, (100g) cooked red kidney bean

1 can, (100g) cooked haricot beans

100 g fresh French beans cut into 2.5cm lengths

6 spring onions chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Salad dressing, about 4-5 tablespoons

2 tablespoons chopped parsley


Drain the cans of beans and place in a bowl.

Cook the French beans in salted boiling water for about 7 minutes, drain and place in the bowl with the beans. Mix in the onions and the salad dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste. Mix through and sprinkle with parsley

French Dressing


175 ml olive oil

4 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 garlic clove crushed

1 tsp. honey

Salt and pepper


Put all the ingredients in a screw top jar, add seasoning to taste. Shake well to emulsify.

Gift Presentation

Look for beautiful bowls or other interesting suitable containers. Fill the bowls with freshly prepared salads and wrap careful in clear cellophane. Tie with a beautiful bow. Type or write the recipe on to some lovely paper, roll up and attach to the gift.


Flageolet Vinaigrette

Bean salad 2a


2 cans, 225g cooked flageolet beans

6 tablespoons French dressing

1 red pepper core and seeds removed, chopped

4 spring onions, chopped

1 tablespoon fresh herbs chopped: mint, parsley and thyme

2 celery sticks, about 18cm long cut into thin slices

Salt and pepper to taste


Drain the beans and place in a bowl. Add the remaining ingredients, the salad dressing, toss thoroughly and season to taste.

Transfer to the dish in which you intend to present your foodie gift.

Gift Presentation as above, together with the recipe.


Aduki Bean Salad

Bean salad 3a



2 cans, (225g) cooked aduki beans

6 tablespoons Ginger salad dressing

6 spring onions, chopped

4 tomatoes, skinned and chopped

3 celery sticks, about 18cm long, finely sliced

2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped

Seasoning to taste (take into account the soy sauce in the dressing)


Drain the beans and place in a bowl, add the rest of the ingredients and the salad dressing, toss well and season to taste.

For the ginger dressing.


175 ml olive oil

2 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 garlic cloves finely chopped

3 cm piece ginger peeled and finely chopped

Place all the dressing ingredients in a jar and shake well to emulsify.

Gift presentation: as above together with the recipe.