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Posts Tagged ‘chickpea

So it’s not Friday…. but I’m sugar-hungover from the not-surprise birthday party my friends had for me last night (long story… one of the group accidentally got phone numbers mixed up on the group text invite. All in good fun, though!) Since I knew all about it ahead of time, it meant I could try out these cookie cupcakes from Jessica’s blog. I think the cookie recipe will become my go-to chocolate chip recipe!

(I now have enough leftover frosting to frost an army. Anyone care to join my army??? Really. I’ve had it with sugar!)

To offset the OD on sweets, I tried something MAGICAL this past week. It’s a sauce that comes together in your food processor in less than 5 minutes. It’s vegan, it’s healthy, it’s a good source of B-12 if you are vegan… and it’s DELICIOUS. I swear to you, it’ll get you to eat mounds of veggies, so long as they’re covered in creamy, cheezy, lightly curried Mmmm Sauce.

I don’t want to steal Mama Pea’s thunder, so I’ll post the link to her blog right here:

Mmmm Sauce

So, what do you do with it?

Dip veggies. Dilute with a little water and use as salad dressing. Use its healthy goodness as a dip for fries. (I won’t tell.) It would probably make a great spread for sandwiches in place of mayo. Heck, the first batch I made went straight onto a whole bag of romaine! (sauce delivery mechanism.)

Caveat: do be sure to find and use nutritional yeast for this recipe. It’s an inactive form of yeast, and lends this (and other) recipe a nutty, cheesy flavor–while staying vegan. This is a relatively new ingredient in my world, and I’ve really enjoyed its flavor! Try looking for it in the bulk section of your health food store or Whole Paycheck.

Once you try this, there’s no turning back! It earned its name with good reason. I always have to have a batch of this sauce in my fridge. (And it’s savory, so it really counteracts all of the overly SUGARY from yesterday.) Make it, and tell me how you’ve used it! 🙂

It’s Friiiiiiday!!! Finally, time for a recipe. How many weeks has it been?

This one is a quick and easy one… and it’s good. Good to take for a picnic or hike, too. Or… if you’re lazy at home and don’t have too many things in the pantry. (who…. me?)

I’ve seen versions of this on the web–and I simplified it quite a bit–that add all sorts of ingredients to make it taste like tuna salad. Seriously? I love me some chickpeas enough that I just want to embellish on their nutty creaminess. I don’t want to make my beloved chickpea something that it’s not. All hail the chickpea!

Anyway, this is a smashing sandwich filling, similar to tuna salad or egg salad. It’s very portable, it’s vegetarian (and can be made vegan), and a darn sight tasty.

Chickpea Salad Sandwich
adapted from various

1 can (15 oz) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2-4 tbsp mayo (regular/canola oil/light/whatever variety)
1-3 tbsp grainy or spicy mustard
2-3 scallions, minced
1 rib celery, minced (I don’t like celery–skipped)

2 slices of your favorite bread
1-2 slices ripe tomato

1. Place the chickpeas in a bowl and rough-mash them with a fork. You don’t want any whole beans.

2. Add the mayo and mustard. Choose the amount of mayo based on how thick or spreadable you want the mixture to be. Mix in the scallions (and icky celery, if using). I used my own homemade mustard…. oooohh, there’s another Recipe Friday for a future week!!

3. Toast your bread slices.

4. Spread 1/2 chickpea mixture (should be enough for two sandwiches) on one slice of bread. Top with tomato slices (or any other favorite sandwich topping: red onion slices, lettuce… totally up to you!) and the second slice of bread. You are ready to eat!

**Do note that you may want to carry any fresh produce separately if you are taking the sandwich on a hike/picnic/etc to keep the bread from getting soggy.

Hey, it’s almost August! I hear we’re going to have Summer #2 this weekend… it’s on parole for another 72 hours. We may get over 70 degrees again!!! (If only there were a way to equilibrate the temps throughout the country, eh?)

What do you guys think about chickpeas? Are you in love with them as much as I am? 🙂

Summer is almost officially here!

(Well….. sort of. Do you live in the Northwest, like me? It’s still cloudy. “Warm”, to us, is high 50’s. I am one of a handful of people seriously plotting an escape. Of course, now that I’ve said that, The Universe has started to conspire against me with several job opportunities, all here. Waaahhh. Feel sorry for me. 😉 )

Anyway. I’ve decided to call off the Trust30 writing challenge until a better writing prompt comes along. The past few days, every prompt has been some manifestation of “list your top five dreams, and what has been holding you back from pursuing them?” Considering I’ve already written about that twice during the challenge, I’ll refrain from boring you all anymore… Maybe I’m just not the target audience for the challenge.

Now, for the recipes!

For those of you who live in areas that have been either blessed or cursed by the sun, I thought I’d remind you of one of my favorite salads. I’ll be tossing this together in a bit and taking it to a housewarming tonight. It’s a Recipe Friday from last year, and it is…

Hot And Sour Slaw

You can make it as hot as you like, but the base of the salad is bok choy and red bell pepper. The sour comes from apple cider vinegar. Simple, quick, and fabulous! 🙂

Now, for the Recipe Friday Double Feature

Earlier this week, I was intrigued by this vegan Curried Barley and Chickpeas from Anne at Fannetastic Food. Curry, barley, chickpeas… three things I love!

I made it, and… it was just OK. I let it sit for about 30 minutes, and it was scrumptious! The problem was that I tried to eat it hot! And it’s much better cold. Much, much better.

Both are recipes I wouldn’t hesitate to take to potlucks–they will get eaten up! (The salad is very colorful!)

Happy weekend! What will you do to celebrate the first week of summer?

I’m baaack! (still catching up!)

This was a good one! Healthy, and vegan, too! (Well until you decide to top it with cheese and sour cream. But that would be your choice, right?)

Recently, I was poking around for healthy soups and stews to have around during our wintry February June weather in the Northwest, and I found this, which also uses part of the monster pile of quinoa I acquired. I traded out the kidney beans for garbanzos because I prefer the flavor, and… I totally spaced out on adding the corn. But I’m sure it would taste great! (Heh.)

Aside from a little time for veggie chopping, this went together really quickly. Hearty, tomatoey, and you can make it as spicy as you want! (Bruce didn’t miss the meat! That’s an amazing endorsement!)

Quinoa Chili
adapted from

2 cans garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
2 tsp vegetable oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tsp salt
1 bell pepper (any color), chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (more if you like it hot!)
1/4 tsp cinnamon
2/3 c quinoa, rinsed and drained
1 c frozen corn
1 (15.5 oz) can tomato sauce
1 c water

1. Heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Add onions, and saute until tender.

2. Add salt, garlic, pepper, and spices; saute 5-10 minutes.

3. Add rinsed quinoa and stir. Add corn, tomato sauce, and water to onion/quinoa mixture. Simmer 20 minutes.

4. Add beans to the pot and simmer another 15 minutes.

5. Serve as-is (which tastes perfectly fine!) or with your favorite toppings: cheese, sour cream, avocados…

There! Finally got you your “Friday” recipe! And just in time for chili season. 😦 Hopefully we’ll break out of this weather rut soon… I think some of you on the East Coast need to give us a few degrees to balance us out, eh?

Welcome to the new week! We had a great weekend at the coast for our anniversary. If you ever get out to Seaview, WA, be sure to eat at The Depot!

Since it’s Monday, I thought it would be a great time to talk about the Meatless Monday trend. Have you heard of it? Do you participate? Back in 2003, Meatless Monday was a program endorsed by a few university Public Health programs in an attempt to cut back on American consumption of saturated fat (the majority of sat fat is consumed through animal products). Something you may not have known is that Meatless Monday was initially started during World War I–not in an effort to make Americans healthier, but to conserve resources and to eat less food. At the time, we as a country were apparently amazed that we felt so great by eating less. We could take some lessons from that era, eh?

In any case, if you google Meatless Monday, you’ll find a variety of healthful meals that don’t involve meat. And, if you regularly consume beef, poultry, or fish, you may discover some new flavors!

just because it’s meatless doesn’t mean it’s healthy

Warning: “meatless” does not always equate to “healthy”. I eat a low-meat diet, and went entirely meatless for a while in grad school. To so many people, the stereotype is that vegetarian=healthy. “I know! I’ll become a vegetarian, and my diet will automatically clean itself up!” I’ve heard so many people say. Well… many nights, I ended up eating chips and cheese for dinner (and my roommate happily joined). Or, one of those big, fluffy loaves of grocery store bread. (Yes, the whole thing.) Not only high-calorie, but low-nutrient. But they were meatless meals!

it can be done!

Again, use the web as your resource to find healthy meatless recipes! I love cooking with lentils, and they’re really versatile with all sorts of spice combinations. Garbanzo beans are another healthy option! (Your wallet will thank you for Meatless Monday, too!)

What are some of your favorite meatless recipes? Here’s one I’m going to toss together later today: cooked spelt berries, garbanzo beans, chopped tomatoes, chopped cuke, lemon juice, olive oil, mint, goat cheese for a salad. (You can sub bulgur or another grain…)

Happy dyed eggs and bunny ears!

Time for the twice-monthly list of interesting posts and articles I’ve found on the web… all helping YOU get fit physically and mentally!

Fellow Pilates instructor Karin Singleton talks about maintaining a strong foundation in your body even if you’re working out other parts of your body. One of my favorite Pilates metaphors: if the trunk isn’t strong, the branches cannot be supported!

A great post from Melinda’s Fitness Blog on overcoming 10 common workout distractions. We can do it!

I read Janetha’s blog all the time, and this (garbanzo bean turkey bake) is going to be one of the next things I make. It looks so yummy! 🙂

OK, this one isn’t fitness-related, but it’s good for the soul (and the dessert is bite-sized, therefore portion-controlled… kind of…) Have you tried cake balls? They’re like truffles, but with cake inside! Easy to make, too! I made my batch with homemade cake and frosting (because that’s my style) but store-bought works just as well. Great party food! (For spring, you could do a yellow cake with colored white chocolate, flavored with peppermint oil… now I want some!!)

Hope all of you are having a joyous holiday!

Thai is one of my favorite ethnic cuisines (along with Indian, and Italian, and Mexican, and Greek…) and considering how many Thai food lovers I meet, I thought I’d share this one. I made it for a dinner party a while back, and it was a hit. You can make it with all vegetables as a side dish, or you can add tofu to make it the main feature (or make it decidedly non-Thai and add my fave, the garbanzo bean. Hey, call it fusion cuisine!)

The original recipe uses mostly eggplant as the vegetable, but then offers up tomato and potato as two variations. I added both when I made the dish, and it worked well.

Mixed Spicy Vegetables, Thai Style
adapted from How To Cook Everything

3 tbsp (or a little less) peanut or neutral-flavor oil
1 large white onion, sliced
2 tbsp chopped garlic
2 dried chiles, 1 minced seeded fresh chile, or 1 tsp red or green curry paste. Feel free to use less, but do use some! blandness
1 ½ pounds eggplant, cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks
1 c peeled and cubed waxy potato
1 1/2 c chopped tomato
1 ½ c coconut milk (ok to use light)
Zest of one lime
3 tbsp soy sauce or fish sauce
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Put the oil in a 10-12 inch skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until it softens a bit, 5 minutes or so. Stir in the garlic and chiles/curry paste, then add the eggplant and potato. Cook, stirring occasionally and adjusting the heat as necessary so the vegetable cooks quickly without burning. When the potato starts to soften, add the tomatoes. Cook until the potato softens, about 20 minutes.

2. (If you want to add ¼ inch cubes of tofu or garbanzo beans, add them now.) Add the coconut milk and lime zest and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. Add the soy sauce, then taste and add salt/pepper if necessary.

A bit stir-fry, but more just braised veggies in sauce. What do you think? What’s your favorite veggie side-dish of any cuisine?

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