Recipe: Ruth Pretty’s Butter Bean Salad with Preserved Lemon Peel

The secret to Ruth Pretty’s zippy butter bean salad? Preserved lemon peel.

Words & recipe: Ruth Pretty  Styling & photos: Carolyn Robertson 


1x 400g tin butter beans, drained and rinsed under cold water
3 tablespoons olive oil, preferably extra virgin
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons finely chopped Preserved Lemon Peel
3 tablespoons chopped parsley leaves
3 tablespoons chopped chives
½ teaspoon flaky sea salt
few grinds black pepper


Place all ingredients in a bowl and gently toss together.

Preserved Lemon Peel

This is a quick and easy way to preserve lemons.


Using a vegetable peeler, remove the peel from 4 lemons (being careful not to include any white pith). Put the peel in a small bowl with 2 tablespoons lemon juice, ¼ cup plain salt, ¼ cup sugar, 3 fresh bay leaves (thinly sliced) and 1 red chilli (deseeded and coarsely chopped). Cover and chill for 2 hours.

Tip lemon peel mixture into a sieve and run under cold water to rinse off the salt. Dry thoroughly with a clean tea towel, then transfer to a small jar. Cover with olive oil (about 1 cup), then cover tightly and store in the fridge for up to one month. Retain leftover oil to use in dressings.

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NZ Life and Leisure This article first appeared in NZ Life & Leisure Magazine.
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