Tomato, Butter Bean and Za’atar Salad

Serves: 2-4

Tomato, Butter Bean and Za’atar Salad

This is a very simple salad which relies on the quality of ingredients. Try and buy the best tomatoes possible-Isle of Wight tomatoes from the Tomato Stall or Marks and Spencer have a good range. Baby cucumbers are a must-their crunchiness is key to the texture in this salad. And then we come to the butter beans. Before The Bold Bean Co. started producing their award-winning range of cooked beans you had to track down the El Navarrico brand –available in good delis and at Brindisa. If you can’t buy either of these I honestly wouldn’t bother with this recipe. Tinned butter beans are a very poor substitute-dry and pappy with no flavour. The lemony tahini and za’atar dressing is one you could use elsewhere- I often leave it thick and use it as a dip for crispbreads.


  • 700g mixed tomatoes, vine, cherry, heritage etc
  • 200g mini cucumbers, topped and tailed
  • 345g Queen Butter Beans from the Bold Bean Co. (see intro)
  • For the dressing
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
  • 2 teaspoons za’atar
  • 100g tahini (preferably Belazu)
  • To serve
  • Black olives
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
Tomato, Butter Bean and Za’atar Salad


  1. Make a little cross in the base of each tomato and place in a bowl. Pour over boiling water to cover and leave for one minute. Drain and refresh in cold water then drain again. Peel off the skins.
  2. Leave the cherry tomatoes whole but quarter the large tomatoes. Scrape out the core and seeds-you don’t have to be too careful about removing every last seed. Roughly chop the flesh and place in a bowl. Season with salt and ground black pepper.
  3. Roughly chop the mini cucumbers and add to the tomatoes, seasoning them with salt. Drain the butter beans and rinse under cold water. Add to the tomatoes and cucumbers.
  4. For the dressing mix all the ingredients together-it will thicken up considerably. Stir in 4-5 tablespoons of cold water to let the dressing down the consistency of double cream.
  5. Pile the salad into a dish and drizzle over the dressing. Scatter over some black olives and drizzle with a little extra-virgin olive oil.
Tomato, Butter Bean and Za’atar Salad