The Leon series of cookbooks strives to offer wonderful tastes in healthy packages. In the newest book in the series, Happy Salads, authors Jane Baxter and John Vincent present ideas that you’ve not tried, I’m sure, but will instantly fine rich in appeal. The recipes are characterized by a simple list of ingredients and swift preparation time.

This salad is a perfect side dish. You probably want something “of substance” alongside it. Salmon or steak would be perfect. The dressing of wine vinegar, maple syrup, and herbs will have your mouth tingling. The robustness here can stand straight up against that heavy protein main dish. The salad itself, rich in vegetables, affords enough substance that you will not need a second side dish.

I think salmon over steak. Chilled white wine, of course.

Keen-Bean Quinoa

Yield: serves 2


For the salad:

  • 3 ½ ounces cooked quinoa, cooled
  • 5 ½ ounces edamame beans
  • 9 ounces mix of cooked peas, sliced raw sugar snaps, sliced broad beans and sliced French beans
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the dressing:

  • 1 clove of garlic, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons mixed chopped fresh herbs: tarragon, chives, chervil and basil


Mix the quinoa in a large bowl with the beans and peas and season well,

Mix together the dressing ingredients and stir through the salad.

Source: Leon Happy Salads by Jane Baxter and John Vincent [Conran Octopus, 2016]