Chickpea and Pea Shoot Salad

I tried out a new salad recipe the other night. What drew me to this recipe was the fact that it called for pea shoots. I have a lot of pea shoots from the CSA, so I welcome any suggestions of how to use them up! Seeing that the recipe called for heating up the veggies and the dressing, I was a little skeptical. It seemed to me that it would be better cold. Well, I have no basis for comparison, but I think I was wrong. I really liked this recipe warm, and I would recommend it! Before I share the recipe, I’ll point out that I skipped the avocado and red pepper because I didn’t have any on hand. It would probably be even better with all the veggies the recipe calls for.

Chickpea, Avocado & Pea Shoot Salad, from Relish Magazine

Salad:
1/2 small red onion, minced (I used 6 scallions)
1 large carrot, finely chopped (I used 2 carrots)
2 to 3 radishes, thinly sliced
1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
4 cups water
1/2 red bell pepper
2 avocados, peeled, pitted and diced
1 cup pea shoots, watercress or broccoli sprouts, washed (I used 2 cups, and I wished I had used more!)

Dressing:
1 T extra-virgin olive oil
1 T balsamic vinegar
2 T freshly squeezed orange juice
1 T lime juice
1 T chopped dill
1/4 t coarse salt

1. To prepare salad, place onion, carrot, radishes and chickpeas in a large bowl. Bring water to a boil and pour over vegetables. Let stand 2 to 3 minutes. Drain well and set aside.
2. To prepare dressing, whisk together all ingredients in a small skillet over medium heat. Simmer until thoroughly heated.
3. Add red pepper, avocados and pea shoots to chickpea mixture (or in my case just pea shoots) and drizzle dressing over top. Toss to coat; serve warm.

Along with the salad, we had whole wheat spaghetti with a homemade sauce, but as my daughter pointed out, it wasn’t really saucy, it was chunky. Kids are so literal. 😉

Spaghetti Topping (not sauce)

1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup browned ground beef, if desired
1/2 bunch garlic scapes
generous handful of fresh basil leaves

Chop garlic scapes into 1/4 inch sections. Heat in olive oil until beginning to soften. Add tomatoes and heat thoroughly. Add chopped basil and heat until wilted. Add salt and pepper to taste. Top your spaghetti and enjoy. I also added about 1/4 cup browned ground beef along with the tomatoes. I cooked one package of ground beef and have split it out over a few meals. Why don’t I always do this? A pound of ground beef is usually way more than we want or need at any one meal. If you don’t do meat or red meat, just skip it. The ‘not sauce’ will be just as good without it!

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Some of my favorite things about this meal: Everyone liked it! I used radishes and dill from our garden for the salad and basil from our garden for the spaghetti topping. I was also glad to use some of our CSA pea shoots. This has been my favorite way to eat them so far! (I’ve also used them in stir-fry and quesadillas.)

It’s so fun to watch our garden grow and even more fun to eat from the garden! I’m still a little ‘iffy’ about what’s what out there, so weeding is a challenge. I have probably left a lot of weeds for fear they might be something we planted. I hope that as the plants get bigger, it will become easier to identify everything! Radishes are the only thing that we started from seed that we’ve had the pleasure of eating. We got small plants for our herb garden, so they were ready to go.

Have I mentioned that I love summer? I do. 🙂

Do you have any favorite salads to share? I L-O-V-E salads and would love to hear new recipes!!

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