Chickpea, Carrot & Cranberry Salad
I spent most of last week in my home city, Mumbai.
Given a chance, the husband will take me out for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Bye bye waistline.
But yes, I do give in sometimes, and love to eat at the places that are unique to the city, such as a chaat at my local bhelwala and breakfast at King Circle's Cafe Madras. We do give in to the occasional demand from the kid to eat pizza and go to one of the chain restaurants, but local joints trump chain restaurants for me, most of the time.
So, I had this coffee meeting at Moshe's, which got me browsing through their interesting salads and sandwiches menu. The next day we were thinking of where to have a quick lunch before I could catch my flight back to Bangalore and we ended up at Moshe's.
The husband and me both got this interesting house salad with our order - it had a small sized chickpeas, julienned carrots, corn, and a spicy olive oil dressing. I mentally dissected the ingredients while digging my fork into it.
Hey don't judge me, that's what us foodbloggers do all the time :P
It tasted delicious and I sure as hell wanted to try it out in my kitchen. So this one is inspired by one of Moshe's house salads.
I left out the corn, as adding corn to every dish is something I love to hate, and used the chickpea variety that I had at home. Also, the addition of cranberries came about, because my dear friend supplied me with a stash recently and it features on my son's current list of favourites, a list that keeps changing with alarming speed these days.
Feel free to use any lemon-olive oil dressing. Here I have sautéed the chickpeas in olive oil and squeezed a lemon towards the end. It's a hearty salad, good enough to be packed in the lunchbox, or for a light lunch, or even as one of the dishes in your party. If you don't have dried cranberries, use raisins or any other dried fruit you have on hand.
Recipe for Chickpeas, Carrot and Cranberry Salad
- Ensure that the chickpeas are cooked just right and not all mushy. They should be cooked through, but retaining their shape.
- Peel and chop the carrot into thin sticks.
- Peel the cucumber, deseed it and chop into small cubes.
- Deseed and chop bell pepper into thin sticks / juliennes.
- In a heavy bottomed pan, heat the oil. Add the chopped garlic, stir for few seconds, then add the chickpeas along with the salt. Saute for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the carrot sticks, red bell pepper and crushed cumin and toss well. Cook veggies on a medium flame for 2-3 minutes until slightly cooked, but still retaining the crunch.
- Remove this into a bowl. Allow to cool for 10 minutes.
- Add the diced cucumber, most of the cranberries, chilli flakes and toss well.
- To serve, lay out the salad greens on a platter. Add the prepared salad over this. Garnish with remaining cranberries, basil leaves and serve immediately or chilled.
Verdict: A beautiful bouquet of colours and flavours, I shall be making this salad quite often!