Nutty Quinoa and Chickpeas Salad
plus a Sur La Table Gift Card GIVEAWAY
Posted By Savita
This nutty Quinoa and Chickpeas Salad, oh my God, I am addicted to it! In-fact, I wouldn't call this a salad, instead it is a perfect meal with good serving of protein, veggies, carbs, and is yet lite and healthy.
This post is also to share some holiday cheers with all of you. Follow recipe and enter to win a $25 gift card to Sur La Table! Enjoy!!
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My love for quinoa and chickpeas shine through this salad. Chickpeas are everyone's favorite in my family. Back home, over the weekends, we used to order spicy Chickpea Curry (Chana Masala) and Indian Bread from a local early-morning eatery and devoured heavy breakfast with spicy Mango Pickle. Those days, no one asked for any food until dinner time..... just filling and satisfying brunch, eat and hibernate..... if there was any chickpea curry leftover, that was a MUST have, on side, for dinner :)
Here, I don't get to enjoy those feasts very often, so I keep looking and experimenting with lots of salads/sides/curries with chickpeas. Quinoa is yet another favorite component in this salad. I specially love it for low-starch content. A little sauteing of cooked quinoa gives this salad nutty and chewy bite. You can also add some toasted walnuts for crunch, but I find this salad great even without them.
Not just for taste or remembering old times, there are many other qualities of this chickpea salad which makes me love it every-time I make it:
1) First, serve this chickpea salad for lunch, and then carry on your day feeling full.... without any mid-evening snacks cravings.
2) This salad is not just vegan but also gluten free.
3) You can make this salad ahead of time and then keep refrigerated until ready to serve.
4) If you looking for healthy gluten free holiday dinner sides, this salad is your answer.
I like to enjoy this salad with a glass of salted buttermilk which is certainly not vegan. So, feel free to take glass of orange juice or coconut water as vegan alternatives.
And from Chef De Home recipe repertoire:
Nutty Quinoa and Chickpeas Salad
- 1/2 lbs Asparagus (diced 2 inch long)
- 1/2 Cup Quinoa (red or rainbow quinoa)
- 1 Cup Chickpeas (cooked, 8 oz can of chickpeas)
- 1 Cucumber (peeled and small diced)
- 2 tbsp Capers
- 4 tbsp Parsley (fresh parsley or cilantro, fine chopped)
- 1/4 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
- 2 tbsp Lemon (fresh lemon juice)
- 1.5 tbsp Olive Oil (1/2 tbsp and rest divided)
- Salt and Black Pepper (adjust per taste)
1. Cook Quinoa - In a deep pot, bring 1 cup water to rolling boil. Add 1/4 tsp salt and quinoa. Bring to boil, then simmer for 6-10 minutes or until almost all water has been absorbed and quinoa has started to sprout (or cook qunioa per package directions). Cover and remove from heat. Set aside covered.
2. Heat 1/2 tbsp oil in a pan. Add diced asparagus, and then saute on medium heat for 2-3 minutes or until asparagus is tender, then add red pepper flakes.
3. Now add cooked qunioa, and saute for 3-4 minutes. Sauteing cooked quinoa gives distinct nutty and chew taste to qunioa.
4. Remove qunioa from heat. Add canned, rinsed chickpeas, then add lemon juice, remaining olive oil, and mix well. Taste and adjust salt and pepper. Let it come to room temperature or chill in refrigerator for 15-20 minutes. Mix in chopped cilantro (or parsley if using), cucumber, and capers just before serving.
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