Tag Archive: Chickpeas

Savory Cinnamon Rice and Chickpeas

Nov 9th 019

I love cinnamon in just about any dessert this time of year, or sprinkled on top of coffee or into yogurt. But it’s not used as much in savory dishes as it should be.

Just a little bit of cinnamon and nutmeg make simple rice into a perfect seasonally spiced rice pilaf. You’ll be surprised how much this rice smells like a snickerdoodle cookie but tastes earthy and subtle.

If you want to take this recipe to the next level, roast the chickpeas while the rice is cooking to add a chewier texture and garnish the dish with salted pumpkin or sunflower seeds on top of extra sour cream.

Nov 9th 018

Savory Cinnamon Rice and Chickpeas

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups uncooked brown rice
  • 3 1/2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1 Tablespoon sour cream or butter
  • 2 15oz cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed

Method:

  1. In a rice cooker or over the stove, combine the brown rice and vegetable stock and boil until the rice has cooked.
  2. add the rest of the ingredients in with the cooked rice and mix well.
  3. Season with extra salt and pepper to taste and serve hot.

Smitten Kitchen’s Chana Masala

Chana Masala

I try to cook things that don’t involve chocolate; they aren’t my favorite but I do. But most of the time I just go out to eat instead. Chipotle and Indian food are favorites of mine. If I could cook as well as either of those then I’d have enough material for a whole other blog.

Since I’ve gotten tired of paying for rice and beans I’ve started to look for recipes online to teach me how to replicate my favorite over-priced takeout food. Chana masala is my go-to Indian entree and the Smitten Kitchen recipe seemed easy enough to tackle for a beginner in Indian food like me.

Chana Masala Spoon

In short it was delicious. Despite the fact that I cut about every corner, using ginger powder, garlic powder and onion powder instead of the fresh varieties and leaving out the few ingredients I didn’t have, somehow this was still flavorful and aromatic. There are certainly more authentic recipes for Indian food on the internet but it can always be helpful to choose something within your comfort zone when you’re trying something new. 

Chana Masala Serving

I added some diced and boiled potatoes to the mix and I would recommend to anyone to do the same because what’s Indian food without potatoes? I would have made more of the sauce since I had quite a few chickpeas to use up; you can always save the leftover sauce and pour it over vegetables or drink it on its own.

Do you have a favorite Indian dish?

Gluten-Free Baked Falafel

Gluten-Free Baked Falafel

“Are falafels gluten-free?”

It was a good question. I had no idea. To be honest, falafels were one of those foods I’ve wanted to try for a while but I’ve never gotten while out because I’ve heard conflicting answers on whether it’s gluten-free or not.

Well, sadly they probably aren’t. Most of the recipes I’ve found online use flour as a binder, and if they’re fried in oil that’s also used for chicken fingers or other breaded items that would make them contaminated. The good thing I learned is that they’re incredibly easy to make gluten-free. I was considering making them with chickpea flour for a while and when I heard that reader Carolyn has had success with that, too, I felt good enough to try it out.

Gluten-Free Baked Falafel Serving

All you really need to make these are a food processor and an oven. I didn’t fry them mostly because that’s messy and I don’t like cleaning surfaces, you know? Also, they end up healthier this way—double plus.

I didn’t know what a falafel was supposed to taste like when I first ate a bite so I wasn’t sure how I’d know if it was a “good falafel”. Well, I don’t have anything to compare it to, but I think the fact that I went back to finish it off at 10pm when I’m usually not a savory person at all says something. I started off with this recipe and went from there. I would gladly make these again and maybe finish them off with a little oil in a pan to give them a brown crust.

Gluten-Free Baked Falafel

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 40 minutes

Ingredients(Makes about 6 falafels):

  • 1/2 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 small clove of garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 15 oz can chickpeas, drained
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons oregano, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 3/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 2-3 Tablespoons chickpea flour

Gluten-Free Baked Falafel Sauced

Method:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a food processor, blend the onion, garlic and olive oil until the garlic and onion are minced.
  3. Add in the chickpeas and lemon and blend until the chickpeas are pureed.
  4. Add in the parsley, oregano, salt, cumin, and coriander and continue blending to incorporate them in.
  5. Add the chickpea flour in a tablespoon at a time until the dough thickens enough that it can be shaped and won’t stick to your hands or a utensil.
  6. Form 6 or 7 balls of dough and place them on a lined baking tray. You can flatten them into patties if desired.
  7. Bake for 40 minutes until the outside starts to brown turning them halfway through.
  8. Remove from the oven and serve hot.

Another good question: Is falafel the singular or the plural? or both?

Caramelized Onion and Balsamic Vinegar Bean Salad

Caramelized Onion and Balsamic Vinegar Bean Salad

I really love baked beans. Who doesn’t? What I don’t love is spending hours cooking them in a hot kitchen when it’s already 80 degrees outside. Why can’t people appreciate baked beans more in the winter when we’re all freezing? It’s a mystery.

Last week on the 4th I needed a vegetarian dish that could sit in a cooler all day. Immediately my mind jumped to baked beans, but as soon as I ruled out cooking those for 4 hours I remembered this old favorite.

Caramelized Onion and Balsamic Vinegar Bean Salad Collage

I first posted this recipe over a year ago. The photos weren’t that good, the recipe wasn’t very clearly written, and my readership was drastically lower than what it is today, so I figured it’d be best to just give it a whole new post. And it definitely deserves one.

You can use three cans of any type of beans; I think the ones listed have the most neutral flavor so they take on the sauce well. To make this completely vegan, you can substitute maple syrup or agave for the honey.

Caramelized Onion and Balsamic Vinegar Bean Salad

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

Ingredients(Makes 4-6 servings):

  • 1 15oz can of chickpeas
  • 1 15oz can of pinto bean
  • 1 15oz can of cannellini beans
  • 1 onion, julienned
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon salt to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil for finishing(optional)

Caramelized Onion and Balsamic Vinegar Bean Salad Onions

Method:

  1. In a large bowl, combine all of the different beans.
  2. Heat the 2 tablespoons of oil in a pan over medium heat.
  3. Add in the julienned onions and sauté for about 10-15 minutes until the onion has turned translucent and slightly crusty.
  4. Remove from the heat and add it in with the beans.
  5. Reduce the balsamic vinegar in a small sauce pan to about half of its original volume by bringing it to a rolling boil for 5 or so minutes. If it over-reduces and starts to harden into a taffy, remove the pan from the heat and stir in some hot water to thin.
  6. Add the reduced vinegar, honey, salt and extra virgin olive oil if using to the beans and onions.
  7. Mix well until the sauce coats all of the beans. Serve hot or cold.

Caramelized Onion and Balsamic Vinegar Bean Salad Yield

20 minutes for a tasty bowl of beans? I’ll take that.

Curry Roasted Chickpeas

curry-roasted-chickpeas

This is undoubtedly one of my favorite recipes of recent. After all it has maple syrup and cinnamon—what’s not to love? And I loved the way the chickpeas tasted after they had been roasted, which made me want to try more variations.

curry-roasted-chickpeas-bowl

Rather than go the sweet route(since I could eat sweets all day), I wanted a savory recipe that would be just as delicious but slightly less addicting. I love the combination of maple syrup and curry in this squash recipe so it seemed like a great way to start. The maple syrup doesn’t actually make these all that sweet; rather, it intensifies the spiciness of the curry and balances its saltiness for an intense flavor combination.

Different curry spice blends have different ingredients. If you’re opposed to spiciness, look for a mild-flavored blend. Additionally, if yours is salt-free, add 1/2 teaspoon salt to the recipe.

Curry Roasted Chickpeas

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 50 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained
  • 1 Tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon Indian curry spice blend

curry-roasted-chickpeas-result

Method:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Toss all of the ingredients together in a large bowl.
  3. Lay out the chickpeas in a single layer on a baking tray and roast for 50 minutes or until nutty and crispy, shaking the pan halfway through.
  4. Serve hot or at room temperature. Keep leftovers in the refrigerator.

curry-roasted-chickpeas-snack

You can eat these on a salad or as a side dish or just on their own as a savory snack. Roasting the chickpeas makes them crispy, crunchy, and addicting.

Roasted Maple Cinnamon Chickpeas And Squash

Roasted-Maple-Cinnamon-Chickpeas-And-Squash

When it comes to food, there are two things I care about: Most importantly how it tastes, but also how it smells. A lot of people will tell you we eat with our eyes, but given how close are taste receptors and smell receptors are, it’s no question that there’s a link between taste and smell. Good food must smell good. And this smells terrific.

Roasted-Maple-Cinnamon-Chickpeas-And-Squash-overhead

When I opened up my oven after this had finished cooking, the entire kitchen smelled like Christmas. You know that warm, earthy familiar smell that’s a bit nutty and complex. I got distracted for a moment and forgot that this was food to eat. The taste is just as good; the soft, sweet squash contrasts the crunchy, spicy chickpeas, and the maple syrup forms a glaze over the whole thing bringing it together. I can’t recommend this recipe enough to get a taste of the season. 

Roasted Maple Cinnamon Chickpeas And Squash

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 70 minutes

Ingredients(Makes 4 servings):

  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained
  • 2 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Roasted-Maple-Cinnamon-Chickpeas-And-Squash-cooked

Method:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Combine all of the ingredients together in a big bowl and mix them until the wet ingredients and spices cover the squash and chickpeas.
  3. Lay the squash and chickpeas out on a baking tray and spread them out keeping it as close to one layer as possible.
  4. Roast for 70 minutes until the squash is fork-tender and the chickpeas slightly nutty.
  5. Serve hot or cold. Keep leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Roasted-Maple-Cinnamon-Chickpeas-And-Squash-salad

Now if only someone would invent smell-o-vision, maybe I could better convince you.

“What Are Capers?”

what-are-capers

Until I started reading food blogs, I would have sworn capers were a type of fish that came in a can that no one except for old ladies and Nigel Thornberry ate(Does anyone know what I’m talking about?). But then I saw them, green little pearls that sort of look like fish eggs, except they were being used in vegan recipes. That only confused me more.

One day I was working in my restaurant and our job was to make the salsa verde used as a pork topper. The ingredients for it are simple: Parsley, jalapenos, shallots, and capers. I asked my shift manager what capers were, figuring she’d know having gone through culinary school, but her guess was as good as mine.

what-are-capers-trader-joes

I went home that night and looked it up online and found out that capers are actually buds from the caper bush that are pickled to give a tart flavor to—the perfect touch to any dish(Side note: How did people know things before the internet? Seriously, I have no clue). I was excited to find them in Trader Joes and even more excited to make a dish with them. I’m leaving town on Friday and had a few too many open cans of beans in my refrigerator so I combined them to make this delicious bean salad.

what-are-capers-bean-salad

Bean Salad With Capers

Ingredients(Makes 4 servings:

  • 1 cup chickpeas
  • 1 cup black beans
  • 1 cup cannellini beans
  • 1/3 cup sliced black olives
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons capers, drained
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt to taste

what-are-capers-recipe

Method

  1. In a large bowl, toss together the beans, olives, capers, and oil until evenly mixed.
  2. Taste and add salt if necessary. Serve room temperature.

what-are-capers-spoonful

If you want to make this starting with unopened cans of beans, use a full can of chickpeas, black beans, and cannellini, 1/2 cup of olives, 2 Tablespoons of capers and the same amount of oil.

Fess up: Did you know what capers are?

How To Cook Beans

May 24th 021

I eat a lot of beans. It’s really unfortunate if you believe the saying “Beans, beans, the magical fruit….” Fortunately, I don’t.

Even though my pantry’s full of cans of beans I like to cook my own when I have the time. Summer is perfect for that. Cooking them is like riding a bike: Once you learn how, you’ll never forget. And it’s a great way to save money and stretch a dollar.

You start by soaking them in water 2-3 times their volume over night.

May 24th 014

When you soak the beans overnight, they’ll look just like canned chickpeas. But they’ll still be too hard to eat.

May 24th 019

Rinse the beans from their soaking water and put them in a large pot with a halved onion, 2 bay leaves, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and enough water to cover them by 2 inches.

May 24th 029

Turn the heat on to bring them to a boil and cook for about 70-80 minutes until they’re tender.

May 24th 034

As they cook, a foam will start to form on the top. Have a spoon and dish ready to scoop this out. By removing it, you make the beans be less gaseous after they’re eaten.

May 24th 056

After they’re cooked, drain the water from them. A pasta drainer is really good for this. Immediately run them under cold water to stop the cooking. The skins at this point should come right off which is a great idea if you plan on making hummus with them.

May 24th 057

You can store these in a container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days or put them in Tupperware with water and freeze them. The method is pretty much the same for any different bean although cooking time might vary with size.

March 28th 046

These are a few of my favorite bean recipes:

Italian Quinoa With Fava Beans

Cannellini Beans With Kale and Walnuts

5-Ingredient 3-Bean Salad

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Dessert Hummus

Summer Green Bean Salad

May 15th 074

This week I’m moving out of where I live now. As everyone who has ever done that before knows, that means Operation: Eat Out The Pantry has begun. I try to keep enough canned and dry goods that if a war suddenly broke out I could live off of what I have for a month. Or through a New England winter. I made this in 10 minutes from canned goods. It would be great in the Summer with fresh green beans, too. It makes a lot which means I have my work cut out for me this week.

Summer Green Bean Salad

Ingredients(Makes 4 entrée servings):

  • 1 can chickpeas, drained
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained
  • 1 can green beans, drained OR 1 cup fresh steamed green beans cut
  • 1/4 cup sliced olives
  • 1/4 cup craisins(optional)
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons white vinegar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

May 15th 067

Combine all of the ingredients together in a bowl.

May 15th 073

Toss the salad until all the ingredients are spread out. Serve at room temperature.

May 15th 081

As good as this was, I have a feeling it’s going to be more fun eating through my chocolate stash than cans of beans. Just a thought.

7 Obsessions

I signed up to get an account on Pinterest this week but I’m still on the waiting list. I’m pretty sure I could have made an appointment with and seen my old orthodontist by this point. I figured I’ll just share my obsessions here until I get an account.

April 30th 001

Raw desserts. Even better if they contain cocoa powder. Ever since starting a plant-based diet I’ve convinced myself if it’s made of nuts and agave it’s practically health food. Please don’t argue with me; I have nothing to back that up with.

April 27th 020

Chickpeas. It’s not just the curry. I don’t remember the last proper meal that I ate without them. Send help. Or an industrial sized can of chickpeas.

BRITAIN-WEDDING/

The Royal Wedding. I don’t care that it’s over; I still want to talk about it. I’ll watch any television program that talks about it. In fact, I bet 60 Minutes will do a report on it and can’t wait to hear what Andy Rooney has to say. Plus, we still have the Royal Honeymoon, Royal Baby-making, and Royal 401k to track. Oh wait, they’re rich. And British. Scratch that last one.

January 11th 159

Chocolate. Always chocolate.

Capture

Doctor Who. Holy intensity, Batman. I’ve watched one episode so far and this already looks like the best season yet. Except I can only remember half of it—I wonder why? If you ever feel compelled to email me about fictional alien conspiracy theories, please do. That’s what the Contact page is for, after all. Just no spoilers. 

Adele. She’s the best thing to come out of the UK since Doctor Who and the Royal Wedding. If you haven’t listened to her 21 album yet, don’t; you’ll never stop.

Kombucha. I know some people are freaked out by this drink but I just love it. It’s probably because I don’t drink alcohol so it’s the closest thing to a buzz I’m getting that’s not a haircut. The long, stringy bacteria thingy(a technical term) is my favorite part.

What do you love lately?