Roasted chickpea salad

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What do you do in your free time? I only ask because I just spent the last hour watching clips from Pitch Perfect. And by clips, I obviously mean I rotated between the auditions, the Riff-off and the final performances. Literally just rotated through them over and over again. And then again. It reminded me of when I was younger and my mom and I used to watch hindi movies together. We would watch all the songs first, then the movie, then the songs again. I’m a sucker for musicals – almost to the point where the basic plot starts to annoy me and I become angry when anybody is talking because that means they’re not singing. It’s like, ” I’m sorry you’re going through this rough moment right now, but I’d really prefer if you just sang your feelings.” You know? You know.

In my (kind of) defense, I grew up watching those hindi movies..which are basically extended music videos. And if I wasn’t watching some Bollywood action, I was probably watching Princess Jasmine and Aladdin sing on a magic carpet. Or Simba grow up during the chorus of “Hakuna Matata.” Honestly? It’s a wonder I’m not singing this to you right now.

And now it’s midnight and I want to write about this salad but I really just want to watch Skyler Astin (swoon) be adorable some more. But what I really want to tell you is how I dedicated a Saturday afternoon to learning “Cups” from this movie, but sometimes I really struggle with how much information is too much information here. Like, should we just pretend I didn’t say anything? Or should I maybe get a life? I just don’t know.
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To answer your questions – 1. No, I have not mastered Cups. It’s really hard. 2. No, I have no idea why I’m talking about Pitch Perfect while showing you photos of chickpeas.

A-ca-awkward….

Roasted and/or pan fried chickpeas are still one of my favorite snacks, so it was only a matter of time before I turned it into a legitimate meal. Similar to Pitch Perfect (oh look, a transition!), I just can’t get enough of this salad. It’s a perfect lunch, snack, dinner, whatever. It’s fine cold, room temperature, hot, WHATEVER.

This was one of those recipes that was floating around my head for days before I finally had the time and ingredients to bring it to life. I’ve made it a few times since and can now honestly say it’s one of the most simple dishes I’ve ever made. I obviously did a test run with the measurements below and am happy with the way it all turned out, but as always, feel free to modify. More spice? Add a few more pinches of red pepper flakes! Not lemony enough? Squeeze that sucker some more! Forgot the top of your cumin bottle doesn’t have the shaker thing (real life)? Four teaspoons of ground cumin it is!

Take it from me (the girl who once forgot to add banana to BANANA BREAD), it’s hard to mess this one up.
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Roasted Chickpea Salad

Serves 4 

2 15-oz cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained

4 teaspoons olive oil

2 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons smoked paprika

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

1/2 red onion, diced

1/2 red bell pepper, diced

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2-1 teaspoons red pepper flakes

1/2 cup black olives, sliced

2 teaspoons lemon zest

1-2 teaspoons lemon juice (half a lemon)

6-8 mint leaves, julienned

salt & pepper to taste

1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated

Preheat oven to 400. Pat the chickpeas drained between a couple of paper towels and pour into a medium-sized bowl. Toss with 2 teaspoons olive oil, cumin, smoked paprika, salt and pepper. Lay in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with foil, and roast for 20-25 minutes until slightly brown.

While the chickpeas are roasting, heat the remaining 2 teaspoons of oil in a large skillet. Add onion and red pepper and sauté until just soft. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and stir for another 30 seconds or so. Turn the heat down to super low and add in the olives, lemon zest and juice. Allow everything to cook on low until the chickpeas are done roasting, then add them to the pan and mix everything to combine. Before serving add fresh mint and parmesan cheese. Can be served warm or at room temperature!

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