Spicy chickpeas salad


This salad is a favorite dish of one of our writers "Mehri" so we thought to share it with you.


Ingredients:

5 leaves of romaine salad or the whole bunch/ruukku

1-2 small kale/lehtikaali leaves (optional)

1 pack of baby-spinach leaves (around 100 grams)

1 pack (around 200 grams) Spicy-Toasted Chickpeas (recipe below if you want to make home-made)

1 small size cucumber (optional)

1 ripe avocado (optional)


Ingredients for salad dressing:

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar/other favorite vinegar

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard/other favorite mustard (optional)

1 teaspoon dried basil/other favorite dried herbs

2 tablespoons tahini/sesame-seeds paste (optional, for a creamer texture)

salt and pepper


Instructions:

1. Wash your greens, let them dry slightly and make sure they're not dripping.

2. Cut the romaine salad and kale (if using) into a larger bowl. If using kale, cut the leaves smaller than the romaine leaves because kale has harder texture. It is, however, very nutritious and a nice combination to any salad.

3. Add baby spinach leaves, no need to cut them; they usually have small and tender leaves.

4. Cut cucumber (if using) into thin slices and add them to your bowl. Cucumber has a wonderful taste and aroma and together with other greens, makes a very delicious and fresh mixture.

5. Add your salad dressing and mix well to combine all.

6. Add spicy-toasted chickpeas on top of the salad.

7. Cut the ripened avocado (if using) into thin slices and decorate your bowl of salad by placing them around spicy-chickpeas.


Instructions for salad dressing:

Combine all the ingredients with 3 tablespoons water in a bowl. Mix and whisk well with a fork or hand-whisk for a few seconds. If you don't like mustard, you can opt it out since the salad dressing is tasty enough even without it. Instead, use 1-2 cloves garlic minced. You could also replace vinegar with lemon if you prefer, but then add a tiny brown sugar/maple syrup and mix well since it cancels the sourness of the lemon. Dry herb gives essential aroma and taste to the salad dressing, so don't miss that. If you want a healthier and ceramier salad dressing, you can also add the tahini/sesame-seeds paste, fresh lemon juice (1-2 tablespoons), and your syrup/brown sugar (1-2 teaspoons) to your dressing ingredients and mix very well until smooth. Add a few more spoons of water if needed. Remember to always taste the salad dressing first and adjust the flavor accordingly before serving.


Recipe for home-made spicy-toasted chickpeas

1 can chickpeas (around 400 grams)

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon cumin powder

1 teaspoon paprika/smoked-paprika powder (optional, for a nicer orangish color)

½ teaspoon chili powder (optional)

salt & black pepper


Preheat the oven to 180 C. Rinse and drain the chickpeas, dry them well using a kitchen towel/paper. Transfer them to a bowl, then set aside. In a small bowl, mix all the spices and salt well. Add the spice-mixture to the bowl of chickpeas, combine everything until the surfaces of the chickpeas is well-covered all around. Prepare oven tray, cover it with the baking paper. Transfer and spread all spiced-chickpeas onto the baking sheet. Bake for about 40 minutes, then stir occasionally until chickpeas are golden brown and quite crispy, but not too dry or burnt.


Tips:

*There are different versions of caesar salad. You can make other options according to your preferences. But because it is a party food, it would be a good idea to go for special and attractive treats such as spicy options (for example spiced-cubed tofu ready to buy in shops replacing the spicy chickpeas, or different spiced-toasted beans and spicy-toasted nuts). This gives a particular nice aspect as well as the delicious flavor to the salad dish.

*There are also small sizes such as cube-shaped toasted bread with different herbs and spices; usually people use them to top the soup, but you can use them also to top your salad which makes it very flavorful.

*You can use extra fresh vegetables according to your taste, for example cherry tomatoes, slices of peppers, or some fresh basil leaves.


*Make some extra salad dressing and leave it next to the dish if guests want to add it to their salad as much as they like.


*The recipe above makes for about 7 servings. If you have lots of guests, simply multiply the ingredients by the number you want according to the total guests.

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