Salad of Baby Kale, Cannellini Beans, Walnuts and Fennel Sausage 4.000

Matt McClain/The Washington Post

Feb 12, 2014

French flavors grace this entree salad. The beans' quick soak in the vinaigrette gives them extra flavor.

Make sure to choose a sausage that is assertively seasoned.

Make Ahead: The beans can marinate in the vinaigrette for up to 20 minutes. You'll have leftover vinaigrette, which can be refrigerated for up to 1 day.


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 4 servings

  • 1 tablespoon good-quality Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallot
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar or unseasoned rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 15 ounces canned, no-salt-added cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • Baguette slices, for serving
  • 1 large clove garlic, cut in half (optional)
  • 5 ounces baby kale, torn into bite-size pieces
  • 1/2 cup walnut halves, coarsely chopped and lightly toasted (see NOTE)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 2 spicy or fennel pork sausages, cooked and cut on the diagonal into 1/4-inch slices (about 10 ounces total)
  • Freshly ground black pepper


Whisk together the mustard, shallot, sugar, the 1/2 teaspoon of salt and the vinegar in a mixing bowl. Add the oil in a slow stream, whisking to form an emulsified vinaigrette. Add the beans and stir to coat; marinate while you prep the remaining components.

Toast or grill the baguette slices until golden brown. If desired, rub both sides of each toasted slice with the cut sides of the garlic. Discard the garlic or reserve for another use.

Just before serving, place the kale in a large, wide serving bowl or platter. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the beans to the greens; toss to coat and incorporate. Taste, and add vinaigrette as needed; reserve the remaining vinaigrette for another use.

Sprinkle the walnuts and chives over the salad. Arrange the slices of sausage on top, then season lightly with the pepper.

Serve with the toasted/grilled baguette slices.

NOTE: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread the nuts on a baking sheet. Place on the top oven rack, then turn off the heat. After 5 to 10 minutes (depending on how hot your oven runs), they'll be fragrant and lightly browned.

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Recipe Source

From Susan Holt, chef and co-owner of CulinAerie in the District.

Tested by Mike Cutler.

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