Tag Archives: chickpea

Chickpea Taco Calzones

20 Sep

Oh hey I’m back again!  Really, I am so bad at this blogging thing.  I make food, I take pictures, I plan on writing a blog post.  Then I’m unhappy with the pictures and I decide not to write anything.

But hey, I’ve been making some delicious food.

I was at an antique shop with the boy and I came across a big bookcase full of cookbooks.  Most of them were vegetarian or vegan!  I decided to pick up The Vegetarian Epicure Book Two by Anna Thomas.  Flipping through the book on the drive back home, I realized I wanted to cook every single thing in there.  So, I’m starting from the beginning!

I made my first recipe from it  yesterday, but I’m going to back up a bit because I made some delicious food the other weekend and I want to tell you about it.

Lately I’ve become a fan of Healthy Food For Living and last weekend I came upon the post for Taco Calzones with Avocado Cream.  I showed it to the boy and we were both making our hungry noises, so I decided they should be made.  But without meat!  So I proposed we make them with my favorite taco filling: chickpeas.

Since I changed this recipe around a little bit, I figured I would share it!

Chickpea Taco Calzones

makes 4 calzones

1 lb. prepared pizza dough (I bought Wegmans whole wheat pizza dough, which is surprisingly delicious for a pre-made dough!)

2 tsp olive oil

1/4 cup chopped onion

2 garlic cloves, pressed

1 can drained and rinsed or 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas

1/2 of a green bell pepper, chopped

taco seasoning to taste (I used Trader Joe’s)

1/4 cup salsa (I used Trader Joe’s Garlic Chipotle Salsa)

2oz. reduced fat cheddar or monterey jack, shredded (I used Organic Valley Reduced Fat Monterey Jack)

1) Preheat oven to 450F, place a pizza stone on the middle rack.

2) Divide your dough into four equal portions, and roll them out into circles about 1/4″ thick.  Set them aside while you prepare the filling.

3) Heat the olive oil in a medium frying pan, add the  onion and cook until translucent.  Add the chickpeas and cook until heated through.  Mash the chickpea and onion mixture coarsely, leaving some big chunks of chickpea.  Add in the green pepper, garlic, and taco seasoning.  Continue to cook and stir until mixed thoroughly.  If the mixture is sticking to your frying pan, deglaze with a little bit of water.

4) Stir in the salsa, remove from heat.

5) Divide the chickpea mixture among each dough circle, placing it on one half of the dough and leaving a 1/2″ border to close the calzone.  Top the mixture with some shredded cheese.

6)  Fold the other half of the dough over to close the calzone, and pinch them shut.  Pierce the tops of the calzones with a fork to allow steam to escape.

7) Place the calzones onto the preheated pizza stone with a spatula or peel.  Cook for about 15 minutes, or until the calzones are browned on top and puffy.

Thanks so much to Healthy Food For Living for the great recipe and inspiration!  Please do check out the original post, it contains directions for freezing and reheating (which I didn’t try as it didn’t take us long to feast through these babies).

We ate it with the avocado cream (also included in the original post linked above!) and additional Trader Joe’s salsa.

I’ll be back soon with the results of my first recipe from The Vegetarian Epicure, Book 2 adventure.  Also, I’ll introduce you to the boy that’s been eating all this food with me!

– Ellen

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Chickpea Bulgur Pilaf

21 Sep

“Okay, so what is a pilaf?”  Bret asked me while I was finishing up cooking tonight.  I wasn’t sure.  Apparently, it depends on who you ask.  The internet has told me that it’s a dish where the grain is browned in oil first.  Then the internet told me that it’s a steamed rice dish with meat, vegetables, and seasoned broth.

I don’t know if what I cooked is a pilaf or not, but it was tasty.  I pulled this recipe out of an old, old Weight Watchers magazine, and I was looking for something pretty easy to cook for dinner tonight.

If people are still reading, we are still around.  I moved to Ithaca last weekend and started a new job last week and it’s been pretty super so far.  I didn’t want to neglect the ‘blog any longer, and I wanted to feed Bret.  So I did both.  Here’s the recipe!

Ingredients!

1 tsp. olive oil

1 cup sliced scallions

1/2 cup chopped celery

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 1/2 cups water with a veggie boullion cube dissolved in it

1 1/2 tsp curry powder

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1 1/3 cup bulgur

15 oz. can chickpeas, drained

1/4 cup dried currants

1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

Directions!

Cook the scallions, celery and garlic in olive oil in a large pot until softened.  Add the spices, broth and bulgur and bring to a boil.  Turn off the heat, cover and let sit for about 30 minutes, until the water is absorbed.  Add in the chickpeas, currants and pine nuts and stir to combine.  Eat!

It was super easy to make, and the spices were just enough.  I tend to go overboard with cayenne sometimes, but it was plenty to leave a little bit of heat in my mouth without being overly spicy.

This makes a big pot full, Bret and I ate a bunch and I still have three servings of leftovers.  Mm!

– Ellen

Chickpea and Big Shell Soup

13 Aug

So Jennifer told me about this recipe, and I decided I would make it. The batch it made was huuuge and I ate off it for a week, and I even gave a bunch to my roommates. The recipe is, like, stolen and scanned from somewhere else but I won’t tell anybody if you don’t. Shhh.

Ingredients!

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, minced

2 carrots, minced

2 celery stalks, finely chopped

14-oz. can chickpeas

7-oz. can cannelini beans

2/3 cup pureed tomatoes

1/2 cup water

1 1/2 quarts vegetable stock

1 sprig of fresh rosemary

2 cups shells

salt and black pepper

Directions!

Heat your oil and then cook your veggies for 5-7 minutes. Then, add your chickpeas and cannellini and cook for 5 minutes. Then stir in the water and tomatoes and cook for 2-3 minutes.

These directions seem way too specific but I guess that’s how you do it if you’re writing recipes for a magazine.

Okay, so then add your stock, rosemary, salt, and pepper, and bring the whole kettle to a boil. Lower the heat to simmering and cover the pot and let it cook for, like, an hour. I went and watched a couple episodes of Avatar while this was going on.

So after the hour’s up, add the pasta and bring it back to a boil. Lower heat again and simmer for however long it takes to make the shells soft. Then you’re done!

-Bret

Banana Chickpea Curry Mk. II

7 May

I had to try this recipe again. Mainly because it was awesome but also because I wanted to try a few things. One thing I didn’t get to try was cooking it with Thai chili peppers because Brenna was over for dinner and she’s a total wussface, and I also didn’t get to try any Thai basil because it wasn’t available at the grocery stores I checked. But I tried my new lemongrass tactics courtesy of Shreyas, and I tried green curry paste and some minced ginger. It turned out real great. Beyond the two lacking ingredients, the only thing I feel like this recipe missed was browning up the chickpeas before adding the coconut and the curry. But this one was mega tasty and might be close to perfect.

I felt guilty making it without Ellen around though. :/

-Bret

Farmer’s Market Couscous Salad

28 Apr

I do not trust Brenna around seasonings. You know what she does with herbs and spices?

Terrorism.

She also just does things that scare me. The other night we made popcorn and she says, “You know what would go good in this popcorn? Cinnamon and cranberries.” My sanity teetered on the brink of uh insanity for a minute. Then she did it and it was good, but I still felt like there was something wrong with the world.

That’s actually a bad example, now that I read it. Though I was coming from a mindset of SALT AND SOME FORM OF OIL. Her weird combinations usually involve something like ground mustard.

Okay, I’m rambling. Anyhow, the Ithaca Farmers Market is open now so we went. I did not see a single farmer for sale! (Ba dum bum tish!) Pickings were slim. I bought some kale. Brenna wanted to buy some stuff and make food with it and she ended up walking away with chives and lemon thyme. After brainstorming ingredients (I think chickpeas was my only contribution) we got the rest at Wegman’s.

Let me editorialize for a minute. I kind of mislike the Ithaca Farmers Market. Most farmers markets you go to and buy directly from the farmer, putting money directly into their pockets, cutting out the middle man, and saving you money. Ithaca? Not so. Farmers Market prices are more expensive than grocery store prices. Now, I can’t blame the farmers. Ithaca has a substantial yuppie-hippie population that loves to do things like buy organic and local and all that, so the demand is there. Farmers can jack their prices. But still, the result is that I tend not to go there as a result.

So, couscous salad: I’m going to try to recreate the recipe the best that I can, but since Brenna did most of the thinking and I just chopped veggies it might be off.

I need to get better lighting.

Ingredients!

2 cups couscous

1 15 oz. can chickpeas

1 cucumber, chopped

1 tomato, chopped

1 large carrot, chopped

juice of 1 lemon

chives and lemon thyme chopped up and added – I’m not sure of the measurements but maybe half a cup of each?

salt to taste

Directions!

Cook your couscous. Let it chill. Then mix in all the other stuff. Blam!

I might have added some olive oil to this mix, and afterwards Brenna said she wished she’d picked up an orange bell pepper. That might have been good. But still, this was really great. The lemon thyme was badass. I’d never even heard of the stuff.

-Bret

Chickpea Pantry Pasta

23 Apr

Holy wow this recipe. A co-worker of mine gave it to me a long time back, and ever since then I don’t think a month passes that I don’t make it at least once. It’s my stand by. Got some pasta hanging out collecting dust? Love chick peas? Desirous of tasty? I recommend!

Ingredients!

2 teaspoons salt

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 lb. linguine (though I’ve used all kinds of pasta for this)

1 15. oz can chickpeas

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1/4 cup red wine

chopped green onion

chopped tomato

Directions!

Okay, take a pasta boiling pot and put enough water in there for a pound of pasta. Add the two teaspoons of salt. You can also add the water out of the can of chickpeas. I like to do that. Now put it on high heat to get it to boil and when it boils add in the linguine. You may want to break the linguine in half when you do that.

While that’s going dump the olive oil into a pan. Heat that too over about medium high heat. When the olive oil starts to get shimmery add the red pepper flakes and the chickpeas. Sizzle sizzle. Let them cook until the chickpeas are nice and browned up. Once that happens, add in 1/3 cup of the pasta water (I hope you haven’t dumped it yet!) and the red wine.

Oh! This is the ultimate recipe to make with someone you like a bunch. You can go out to get the ingredients together but also go out and find a nice red wine. Before you even start cooking uncork it and pour yourselves a glass. Talk about the wine and whether you like it and the flavors and whatnot. Seriously, this is the ultimate nice social cooking recipe.

Anyways, leave the chickpeas alone and let it cook down. Your pasta’s probably done by now. Dump it into a colander and then put it back in your pasta pot. When the chickpea fluid has cooked down to a nice oily base, dump everything in with the pasta and toss it. Now serve! This serves about 6 I’d say. Sprinkle the green onions and tomato on top. Oh and add red pepper flakes to taste. That’s good too!

Here’s a warning, though. The chickpeas are wily. Eating this with a fork can be troublesome and is a learned skill. When you serve it a lot of the chickpeas go to the bottom so you might need a fork and a spoon for serving. I like to use tongs and a spoon. But it’s worth the trouble.

Vegetarian note: This might be a recipe for one those hard Italian cheeses to be grated onto it at the end, but I have found it to be totally satisfying without. Your call!

-Bret

Banana Chickpea Curry

14 Apr

So for our first post I thought I would write about a recipe we made together and I think we talked about making a food blog while we were doing that. So yeah this is totally appropriate as a first post. I really wanted to cook something with bananas and so we searched the internet.

You know what there’s a lot of? Banana desserts. Know what there’s not a lot of? Banana entrees.

So we thought real hard and decided that bananas would be awesome in a curry. Other people thought that was a good idea too but their recipes were all too complicated. We came up with some ingredients to use and away we went. It was good!

Banana Chickpea Curry!

Ingredients!

2 tablespoons canola oil or some other oil for sauteing

3 shallots, chopped or diced or something

1 bell pepper, chopped

1/2 stalk lemon grass, chopped

2 bananas, unripened and sliced

1 15 oz. can of chickpeas

1 however-many oz. can of coconut milk

2 tablespoons curry paste (we used red but that’s because it’s all we had – green might be better)

Directions!

This is how Ellen did it. I watched. And waited…

So heat the oil in a big pan or skillet. Let it heat up good and then drop in your shallots, bell pepper, and lemon grass. Let it sizzle and smell good until it turns soft and your shallots are translucentish.

Now you should add in the chickpeas and the bananas. Let them heat up and brown up. I don’t know if our bananas actually browned, but they should have. Okay, forget the browning.

Now dump in the coconut milk and the curry paste. Stir it up until it changes into a color. Let it bubble for awhile. Make sure your vegetables are soft. Poke them!

Okay, I think it’s done. You should serve it over rice or maybe some noodles. Eat! Not bad for people who have no idea how to make curry, right?

Bret’s Notes!

So here’s what I would do differently if I was doing it again: I would have put the chickpeas in at the very beginning so they would have browned. I also would have put in the whole stalk of lemon grass and maybe I would have put it in with the coconut milk. Maybe I’m making this up, but I feel like the flavor of the lemon grass would saturate the curry better that way.

Two additions I would make are some Thai basil. It was super-good, but it lacked something. I think that something was Thai basil. Ellen thinks I’m wrong. I think her butt is wrong. Ooh. I would also add a Thai chili pepper or two because I like spicy things. If you don’t like spicy things don’t do that. Eat something safe instead like bread. Or porridge.

Also: I like cooking with Ellen!

Ellen’s Notes!

I did some lemongrass research.  To bring the flavor out more, I think we should have sliced it and then mooshed it in a food processor for a couple of seconds.  And then it could be added to the coconut milk!  Something about bruising the stalks brings out more of the lemony flavor, or so’s the word on the streets.  There’s a stalk and a half of lemongrass left.  I will try it and report back!

Bret might not be wrong about the Thai basil.  I do, however, dig on cilantro quite a bit and it would probably be quite tasty either added at the last minute or used as a garnish.  I am right there with him on the Thai chili peppers.  The cayenne added enough heat, but the peppers would add heat and tastiness.

I am fairly sure that Bret and I are awesome.  For only having a vague idea of what makes a curry, the result was curry-ish enough to fool me into thinking we knew what we were doing.

I like cooking with Bret too!