Friday, June 29, 2007

My good friend the chickpea

...O how I love thee.

I don't know what it is about chickpeas, but I find them more refreshing and satisfying than other legumes during the summer--perhaps because they lend themselves so well to consumption alongside fresh, raw veggies, both plain and mixed into salads and other wonderful concoctions. I certainly eat my share of these guys, and I have two fabulous lunches to prove it.

The first is a standard favorite. Hummus with fresh cucumbers, squash, and toasted pita wedges. I had a friend over for lunch and we made this together, and I have come to learn that I really enjoy making hummus with friends--it's a fun task and makes for good fellowship.

It's just a basic hummus recipe, with the addition of some sun-dried tomatoes for a little twist.

A second chickpea-centered lunch that I came up with recently was this curried chickpea salad... which turned out to be one of the best recipes I have ever invented just on the fly. I've got the recipe for you, too.

It couldn't have been more perfect served on a bed of romaine lettuce (I love buying the organic salad greens that have been "reduced for quick sale")... but I imagine it would make a decent sandwich or pita as well.

Curried Chickpea Salad

3 cups cooked chickpeas, drained well
1/4 cup Nayonaise
1/2 sweet onion, minced
1 rib celery, minced
1 clove garlic, crushed and minced (or run through a garlic press)
1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup raisins (optional)

Mix the chickpeas and Nayonaise in a bowl, and mash the chickpeas with the back of a fork until mostly mashed, with a few lumps. Add remaning ingredients and combine well. Serve chilled over salad greens.



jenny said...

girl I LOVE me some hummus.

Don't Get Mad Get Vegan! said...

oh yeah, i know exactly what i'm making for lunch tomorrow. that curried chickpea salad is right up my alley.

thanks so much for sharing the recipe! i eat plain chickpeas as a snack all day long. love them right outta the 'fridge. yum!

aTxVegn said...

I share your love of the chickpea! I really could eat them every day. Your salad looks super and I can't wait to try it. I'm sure I can find a can of chickpeas in the pantry. Thanks for the recipe!

Veg-a-Nut said...

Wow! this recipe is a keeper for lunches next week. My mouth is watering. I think my scrambled tofu from this morning is gone. Time to eat!!

Okra Mary said...

I'm making this tomorrow!

I make a similar salad, but with tempeh, based on a vegweb recipe...but I think chickpeas will be much better. thanks for the recipe!

VeggieGirl said...

I have only just recently started loving chickpeas (I posted about that whole ordeal this past Tuesday) - that curried chickpea salad looks divine!

laura jesser said...

Jenny, me too!

DGMGV, I do that too (right out the fridge)... I'm glad I'm not the only one!

Diann, oh the chickpea--what's not to love? I hope you like the salad!

Veg-a-nut, I love making things like this and eating it for lunch all week. It makes lunchtime a lot easier! I hope you like it.

Okra Mary, I bet tempeh makes a tasty salad too! I've actually never done anything like this with tempeh... I should try it!

Veggie girl, I never knew liking chickpeas could become an ordeal... I'll have to read about it!

VeggieGirl said...

haha yes - I used to despise chickpeas with a passion; however, I am hooked on 'em now!!

keep up the fantastic recipes and food pictures :0)

Ron and Ginny said...

I love hummus, too. That is the only way I eat chickpeas, though. I guess I haven't tried them any other way. I need to do that. :-D

theONLYtania said...

Chickpea salad.. yummm.
My hummus always comes out rather tasteless :-( I better make some this week to practice, I want to have it for my party on Saturday (the 7th.)

urban vegan said...

Chick peas are one of my best friends, too. I'll have to try your curried chickpea salad. Hummus is always good too--a vegan classic, right?

KleoPatra said...

It's so weird for me and chickpeas. Avoiding them at salad bars as if they were an animal product. Turning my nose up at them in the store when i would see them in cans. i would NEVER eat 'em when i was younger and i would say that for the last 10 years, i haven't been able to get enough of them.

Hummus is one of my staples. When i was on my recent road trip up the coast, i kept buyin' red roasted pepper hummus to keep in the cooler and it was amazing with offerings from my big bag o'garlic bagels.

i wish i could try yours...

i am going to try your curried chickpea salad, if i can find my Nayonaise... i think i have some in my fridge... do you think it would "ruin" it to add more garlic and cut back a little on the curry powder??

laura jesser said...

Veggiegirl, thanks!

Ron and Ginny, it took me quite a while before I decided to branch out form hummus and see what else they're good for. I'm glad I did!

Tania, hmm... I wish I could help you. My hummus usually turns out pretty well. I've posted several recipes on this site, if you wanna take a look. And if you need some advice, let me know.

Urban Vegan, hummus is one of the only things I can ALWAYS count on being vegan... It's nearly foolproof!

Kleo, it's so funny how we change our minds about foods like that. As for me, I never saw a chickpea until college, and it was love at first taste. As for your question, no, I don't think that would ruin it at all. As it is, the garlic flavor isn't terribly strong--it could certainly stand for more, if you want!

bazu said...

I can't live without my beloved chickpeas. Here's a haiku in their honor:

Straight out of a can
Cooked to complex perfection
I'm yours either way