Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Pa’s Easy Ginger Chickpeas with Salad of the Week 1

    Hi and welcome back.
    Today I have got a quick and simple spicy chickpea dish for you, coupled with my salad of the week Rolling on the floor laughing
    This is the salad riposte to those who complain that salad is bland and boring With only 4 ingredients this salad bites back.
    My little chickpea treat can be served warm or cold so both are ideal if you need to prepare in advance.
    Tasty and simple.
             That is the way I like my food and I hope you do too.

        Good, y06072013722ou made it this far. 
    Chickpeas are one of my favourite carbs, so versatile, nourishing and a good plain base on which to build up flavours. And they are gluten free Thumbs up
     I love to use them as the basis for my veggie pie fillings but this is SUMMER in England for a week or two so I will leave the pies for later.
     Today I have a quick and simple chickpea dish with another leaf salad. I picked up a lovely bunches of fresh mint and watercress of my local market which naturally are the base for the salad.
    For the chickpea dish i have used tinned chickpeas for speed and simplicity. Unless you are making huge quantities and planning well in advance I don’t think there is any point in preparing them from scratch yourself.
    You can see that the fresh raspberries that I intended to use as the juicy item in the salad  are have become raspberry juice. They were soft and when I washed them turned on the tap too fast which squashed them. DOH!!! Eye rolling smile I had no choice. I just had to rub them through the sieve and keep the juice to use later.

    Off we go, start by washing all the produce thoroughly without squashing anything irredeemably.  

 Ginger Chickpeas                               Salad of the Week
 240g   chickpeas, drained and rinsed               230g   fresh watercress
 40g     root ginger                                   100g   fresh mint leaves
 1 bulb  garlic                                         250g   sweet peppers
 1         large lemon                                 200g   fresh fennel
 100g   cashews, unsalted                            200g   closed cup mushrooms                 
                            for the dressing:-
                   100g    freshly pressed raspberry juiceWinking smile


    Into a06072013735 large heatproof jug crush the bulb of garlic through a press, then shave the root ginger into it. Juice the lemon and pour that over then leave to stand.
    Put the chickpeas into a pan and just cover with water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and drain. Add the chickpeas to the jug and crush lightly with a masher. Mix well
    Leave to soak. If you want to serve this dish warm, cover the jug and put into 06072013730a warm oven.
         Now for the salad.
   Into a large bowl, chop the watercress fairly small. Clean seeds and top from the peppers , cut into long strips and add. Shave the fennel into the bowl. Roughly tear and crush the mint leaves, add those to the mix and toss thoroughly. Finished, put to the side.

    Take the j06072013738ug of chickpeas and stir the cashew nuts in. Chop the mushrooms into a dish, add the chickpeas and mix thoroughly. Finished.

     For the dressing, if not already accidentally achieved, juice the raspberries and sieve seeds and pulp out. Thin with a little water or lemon juice if necessary and pour into a serving bowl and there you have it.

        Now you have tasty dish that looks good, serves 4 – 6 people depending on appetite and is ideal for a summer lunch or light supper as the sun goes down.
    Preparation from start to finish is no more than 30 minutes then serve your friends or simply let them help themselves.
    I found the raspberry juice covered the salad gloriously but others thought it still a little too undressed Eye rolling smile  a little sea salt and cracked black pepper soon sorted them out. Regular readers have probably noticed I use very little salt in food preparation, preferring to leave it to individual taste.

           Well there you have another of my quick and simple dishes packed full of flavour and I hope you enjoy it as much as I have.
        Serve with a good cheese on the side, or separately prepared other animal protein if you need to offer a carnivorous option.

    For a little variation there are all sorts of edible mushrooms available nowadays and I encourage you try different varieties to your usual. If you are a fungus hunter and know what you are doing then go out foraging and amaze your friends with some of the tasty, edible wild mushrooms but take care. If you aren’t sure what you are doing best keep your foraging confined to your local markets Sun
        If you are serving drinks with it and want to maintain the theme, try simply crushing a sprig of mint into the glass. It’s terrific with a glass of cider or white wine or even simple water. I can only hope it is not long before the mint I have planted is established, it is such a versatile and tasty herb and so often overlooked for anything but simple uses.

              As always the food preparation would not have been possible alone, so veel dank nogmaals mijn weinig voedsel ninja, de mooie Modelleine, voor de onschatbare hulp Ninja

            That’s all from me today, if you have got this far, then well done and thank you too, if you want to leave a comment below I would love to hear from you
                  wishing you Fungus, Fun and Frolics in the sun

                        Love from Pa