Saturday, February 4, 2017

Recipe: Winter Salad with Chickpeas, Apple, and Blue Cheese

Guess what? I came up with a recipe! This happened last Monday, when I was throwing together some food for a monthly potluck and trying to give myself some good options so I wouldn’t feel deprived with all my grainlessness. I began putting elements together in a way I thought would taste good, and before I knew it, I had assembled the hands-down most delicious salad I’ve ever eaten. I was kind of stunned.

Sure, I’ve kind of come up with recipes before— a basic white sauce with kale, for instance— but this was the first one that was truly creative, not just adapting a technique I’d learned from someone else. The balance of tastes (sour, tangy, sweet, vinegary, pungent) and textures is exquisite.

This salad has a lot of components, but the essential four elements are the chickpeas, green apple, blue cheese, and vinaigrette. Everything else adds texture and taste, but if you’re a minimalist, just use those four.

Here is the recipe:

Winter Salad with Chickpeas, Apple, and Blue Cheese


Roasted sweet potatoes and beets— Use about twice as many sweet potatoes, by volume, than beets. Cut them into 1/2-inch dice and coat the pieces in olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, onion, paprika, etc. Bake them on a sheet at 450 degrees for about twenty minutes, then check for softness. You should be able to easily poke a piece with a knife. Bake until tender. These keep for several days in the fridge, so make them ahead of time.

Salad greens— I used romaine and bok choy, cut into small pieces, but pretty much any salad green would be good. I also shredded some carrot into the greens.

Chickpeas— Canned chickpeas will work, but they’re better made from scratch. Try this Crockpot recipe. After they’re cooked, sautee them in a little butter and season with salt, pepper, and a couple shakes of parmesan. 

Green apple, such as Granny Smith, diced

Blue cheese

A few chunks of avocado, seasoned with salt and pepper

Vinaigrette— Make this super-simple homemade vinaigrette: pour a couple tablespoons of red wine vinegar (or apple cider or balsamic vinegar or lemon juice) into a jar, and add a shake of salt and pepper and a couple crushed garlic gloves or some garlic powder. Stir in a teaspoon of Dijon mustard, and shake or stir. Then add olive oil— two to three times as much as the vinegar— and shake thoroughly. May be stored at room temperature for several weeks.

To assemble: Put the warm root vegetables at the bottom of your bowl, then top with salad greens, chickpeas, apple, and blue cheese in whatever quantities you like. Pour the dressing over the top and enjoy!


No comments:

Post a Comment