Chickpea Salad

I’m not on a vegetarian kick, I swear. If you read Monday’s post, you’ll recall this tasty pita. It’s soooo good. This salad, it’s also soooo good. I love salad, I really do. But slimy gross lettuce with mealy, cardboardy tomatoes (yes, cardboardy, I said it) makes me kind of want to gag. No one wants to open up their little lunch container to look at that. Blerg.

This salad isn’t like that. All the ingredients are sturdy, easy-to-transport, tasty items that you’ll love for lunch. My only caution on this one, it has some rather pungent ingredients, so if you have co-workers you like, you might want to bring your toothbrush for after lunch. But you should keep one in your desk anyway, you never know. For those of you who work alone, tear it up, no toothbrush needed.

Chickpea Salad 

Recipe courtesy of Rachel Ray

Ingredients

  • 2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 small red onion finely chopped
  • 1 small red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • A few ribs celery and leafy tops, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or grated then grinded into a paste with salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons rosemary, finely chopped, a few sprigs
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
There’s no cooking here friends, just dumping ingredients into a bowl. You can totally do this. You can even buy pre-chopped ingredients if you need to.

Rinse your beans. You should ALWAYS rinse canned beans. It helps decrease the sodium by like 50% or something, maybe more. Plus, that bean juice can be kind of gross. Get it off.

Add the onion, red pepper, and celery. Use the leafy green parts of the celery if you have them. They’re good for you.

Add the rosemary and crushed red pepper flakes. It’s not going to be hot, just has a little kick. But if you’re sending this with your kiddo for lunch, you can omit it if you like. Just make sure to adjust the black pepper accordingly.

I use a garlic press to smash my garlic. You can chop it, mash it with a fork, whatever. Just get it into small bits and then grind it with a little salt. Mash it up into a paste and blend it with the oil and red wine vinegar. Pour this over the mixture.

Use a spatula to mix well. Make sure everything gets coated with the red wine vinegar mixture. At this point Mr. Bundt came into the kitchen and said it smelled good and could he have it for breakfast. Um, no. And here’s why. This is one of those salads that needs to sit in the fridge, at least for a few hours. Let it meld. It’s worth the wait, I promise.

It’s soooo good! The creamy chickpeas with the crunchy vegetables is a great combination. A little feta on top might be nice too. Don’t mix it into the whole salad though, crumble a few pieces over your serving before you eat it.

If you love this kind of salad, check out this great quinoa salad here.

What kind of salad do you like? Do you take it for lunch at work or eat it at home?

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