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Posts Tagged ‘Chickpeas’

I made this to use up stuff in my fridge. Primarily four green tomatoes that I couldn’t figure out what else to do with. It turned out well, a bit too hot at first, but mellowed when I let it sit. Don’t tell anyone, but the green curry paste I used had been (and still is) sitting in my fridge since 2007, or so. Yeah, I know. But I didn’t die from botulism, so whatever.

Recipe after the jump.

Green tomato, sweet potato coconut curry

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So… haven’t posted in a while, but I have been cooking. Mostly I have been working on just getting through some of the stuff that had piled up in my freezer, as pictured previously and making a dent in the immense amount of CSA veggies I had gotten.
One of my “empty out the freezer” meals was this:

Seared green beans, Mexican millet and raw butternut squash salad

I had a few more chickpea cutlets to eat, so I stuck that in here. I had some old millet in my pantry, I paired that with some of my fresh tomatoes for Veganomicon “Mexican Millet”, then there was an opened, half-full pack of frozen green beans far back in my freezer that I’d totally forgotten about. Must have come from my winter share last year. Ehh… yeah, I know.
I seared the green beans with garlic and olive oil, inspired by Terry Bryant’s Vegan Soul Kitchen recipe. To round it all out I grated a butternut squash and tossed it in salt, olive oil, lemon juice, a dash of red wine vinegar and a dash of cayenne pepper.

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But still a fairly “meat and potatoes” kinda lunch. At least I think so. I rarely eat this sort of very m.o.r. American/ British food, but I wanted to use up odds and ends before I get my new batch of CSA veggies tomorrow.

The chickpea cutlets are famously from Veganomicon. The green pea and leek puree is from Bryant Terry’s Vegan Soul Kitchen. I made both exactly according to recipe. It was all very tasty, though my tastes required some lime and Tabasco all over this to kick it up a notch. Terry calls these a mashed potato alternative in his book, and I’d say that’s about right. He also says the recipe gives about 4-6 servings, I’d say 3 servings are more like it, but then I’m a total hungry beast so…

And yeah, please excuse the reappearance of yesterday’s kaleslaw, as I said, I wanted to finish off whatever odds and ends were hanging around my fridge.

I’m trying to get in to the habit of proper “mise en place” before cooking a.k.a. lining all your ingredients up first, to eliminate frantic digs through your cabinet to find the cumin while the onions are burning on the stove.
Mise en Place

Chickpea Cutlet with  Green Pea and Leek Puree

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So, I haven’t posted for ages due to being overwhelmed by life. I have a huge backlog of photos, which I will save for later. For now I will just jump right back in:

I was at Sahadi’s recently. Two favorite moments:

1.) The young guy in the bulk section who couldn’t believe the amount of chickpeas I was buying. I assured him I’d get through them soon enough. He looked amazed.

2.) At the check-out line I had the fortune of being greeted by the always friendly Charlie Sahadi who told me Sahadi’s is celebrating it’s 60th anniversary and handed me a flier with a bit of Sahadi history. Turns out May 1948 was the month Sahadi’s was born. I was sorely tempted to ask about the coincidence with another historical event that happened in May 1948, but didn’t.

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Much chickpeas are consumed chez foodmonkey. I’m on a temporary no-hummus regimen due to rehab-related issues. That doesn’t mean I can’t work chickpeas in here and there in other ways.

Today I tried something I’ve been meaning to make for a while: “Lablabi” a blended chickpea soup out of Olive Trees and Honey. I gather it’s a North African thing. I normally don’t post recipes straight out of cookbooks out of respect for the author, copy right and such. I thought I’d break that rule here, because I can’t imagine there aren’t a thousand versions of this already on the internets.

Lablabi

It’s sort of like hummus soup minus the tehina (hummus is the Arabic and Hebrew word for “chickpea,” so I guess it is in fact hummus soup). Very very tasty. Totally hit the spot for me. I suppose you could eat it with a few toasted wedges of pita if you were feeling ambitious, but I was lazy so I didn’t. I think the more “authentic” way is to leave more whole chickpeas in there, I think I will next time. Trust me, there will be a next time.

Here goes:

Lablabi — North African Chickpea Soup

2 1/2 cups dried chickpeas

olive oil

1 onion

3 carrots

1 small celeriac

3 big cloves of garlic

10 cups of water

2 bay leaves

2 tbsp harissa

1 1/2 tbsp ground cumin

freshly ground black pepper

salt

juice of 2 fresh lemons

1 bunch of parsley, chopped

Prep:

Rinse the chickpeas thoroughly and throw out any bad ones. Soak over night in a bowl of water. I’m a bit pedantic and like to change the water a few times, but that’s just me). Also, I like to add a tablespoon or so of baking soda to the soaking water, this helps the chickpeas get tender later on.

Now for the actual cooking:

Chop the onion. Fry in a large heavy bottomed pan in the oil over a low heat until transparent and soft. In the meanwhile, chop the carrots and the celeriac. Crush the garlic. Add to the onions and fry for a while longer until everything is soft and aromatic. Rinse the chickpeas, add. Pour in the water and add the bay leaves. Cook for 1 1/2 – 2 hours, until some of the chickpeas begin to break and they are soft enough so that they make a non-grainy mush when you crush them with a spoon. Add the harissa, pepper and cumin. Cook for another 15-20 minutes. Fish out the bay leaves.

Let cool a little. Blend quickly in a food processor or blender (I like to leave a little bit of chunkiness.) Add salt to taste and stir in lemon juice. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and eat.

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