The other day I went back to Boche, the new neighborhood tapa bar here in León, Spain. The waiter took our order and recited from the semi-long list of various tapas we could choose from: Tortilla Española guisada, caldo gallego, ensalada de garbanzos, ensaladilla… and I forget what else. Knowing how healthy it was for me, I went with the chickpea salad (ensalada de garbanzos).
The World’s Healthiest Foods (WHF) wrote that in a recent study, participants reported eating less food and “eating fewer processed food snacks during test weeks in the study when garbanzo beans were consumed.” Another study showed that daily consumption of these beans “improved participants’ control of blood sugar and insulin secretion.” Garbanzos are loaded with fiber and protein. That alone is good enough reason to make them a part of your healthy eating habits, especially if you are trying to eat less meat.
Chickpea salad, tapa or starter? It doesn’t matter… just eat them.
The following is a basic recipe for vegan chickpea salad. Add anything to it that your taste buds demand. Perhaps vegetables, cooked eggs, octopus, or tuna. Let your taste buds inspire you.
Servings: 8 Preparation Time: 1-1/4 hours Unattended Time: 4 hours
1 pound dried chickpeas
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 cup finely chopped green or red bell pepper
¼ cup minced parsley
½ cup olive oil
2 to 2-1/2 tablespoons white vinegar
salt to taste
lettuce, washed, (to serve under the salad
Optional: tuna, octopus, or salt cod
1. Cook the chickpeas in salted water until they are tender; about 1-1/4 hours.
2. Drain and cool the beans and the add the remaining ingredients. Test for seasonings, adding salt to taste.
3. Store in the refrigerator about 4 hours to cool.
4. To serve, place a bed of lettuce on each plate and top with the chickpeas. Garnish with fresh parsley.