You Say Garbanzo Bean I Say Chickpea

25 Jan

… well, you probably say chickpea too. I wonder why the marketing geniuses that can legumes haven’t caught on.

Have you ever noticed that every time you go to Whole Foods to buy a can of beans they are out of whatever it is that you are looking for? Literally EVERY TIME. Two weeks ago I needed black-eyed peas, they were out of stock. Last week I needed black beans and they were out of stock. This week I need chickpeas and I bet they will be out of stock. What gives Whole Foods? Get it together! And while you are at it please stock frozen asparagus – I just can’t believe that they were out of stock too! For the love of Isa Chandra Moskowitz!

Goodness! That is not the rant that I intended to make. I was prepared to have an in-depth conversation with myself about why one item would be called both a bean and a pea and then go on to ponder what they heck a garbanzo is anyhow. Fortunately (for you) I don’t have time for all of that, so let’s move on.

I don’t care much for chickpeas so when I found a recipe for Chickpea Piccata I thought to myself, how can I make a vegetarian piccata without chickpeas? I decided to replace the chickpeas with cauliflower.

I don’t have much experience cooking without a recipe so this was an interesting endeavor. My plan was to slice the cauliflower, dredge it in panko, and bake it – I thought that would replicate a pan-fried chicken cutlet. Then I would just combine the cauliflower with my favorite piccata sauce.

Cauliflower Steak

As it turns out my plan went to hell in a hand basket when I forgot to slice the cauliflower and instead broke apart the florets. For some reason I remembered to dredge it in panko which was a huge disaster and required me to rinse off the breadcrumbs and regroup. The bottom line is –  although the recipe did not go as intended, it was tasty enough to share with you.

Cauliflower Piccata

1 head of cauliflower, cut into bite sized pieces

1/3 cup lemon juice

½ cup vegetable stock

¼ cup capers

1 Tbsp cornstarch


Salt & Pepper to taste

Steam cauliflower. Heat lemon juice and stock in a skillet.

Mix cornstarch with a little bit of the sauce until dissolved. Add to the skillet and stir to combine.

Add cauliflower, capers, salt and pepper to taste.

Heat until sauce thickens.  Top with parsley and serve hot.

Now isn’t that the easiest recipe you’ve ever seen? If you are not partial to the tang of lemon start off with ¼ cup and see how you like it. You can easily adjust the seasoning based on your preferences or any kitchen mishaps that may happen.

A blog entry with chickpea in the title wouldn’t be complete without at least one chickpea recipe. This is far and away my favorite way to eat the humble chickpea… teriyaki style.

The recipe comes from The Happy Herbivore cookbook and makes a great dinner, snack, or even breakfast.

Hawaiian Teriyaki Chickpeas (adapted from The Happy Herbivore)

15oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

¼ cup teriyaki sauce

2 cups cooked brown rice

½ can diced pineapple, drained

1 mango, diced

½ red onion, minced

Handful cilantro, chopped

½ lime, juiced

Salt to taste

Combine chickpeas and teriyaki sauce and allow to marinate for 5 minutes. Place chickpeas in a skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring regularly, until most of the liquid has absorbed (~ 10 minutes)

Combine pineapple, mango, red onion, lime juice, and salt to create a salsa.

Serve chickpeas over rice then top with salsa.

That’s all there is to it.

Chickpeas are one of the easiest things you can cook. You can top them with a sauce, bake them in the oven with some seasoning, mash them into a dip, or even puree them and make yummy brownies.

What is your favorite way to eat a chickpea? Be sure to share the recipe because I plan on stock piling cans of chickpeas the next time I am at the grocery store just so I can be well prepared for future culinary endeavors when I’m sure Whole Foods will be out of stock of the key ingredient.

~ Happy & Healthy Eating


3 Responses to “You Say Garbanzo Bean I Say Chickpea”

  1. CBZ January 30, 2012 at 8:58 AM #

    The Good Bean – All natural roasted chickpea snacks. Gluten free, Low GI, low fat , high protein. And most importantly – delicious!

  2. CBZ January 30, 2012 at 10:58 AM #

    This vegan stew relies on canned chickpeas, and their liquid, for body. Simmering them with some aromatics—garlic, onion, bay leaf, & smoked paprika—adds a ton of flavor back to them.

    Spanish Chickpea and Spinach Stew with Ginger

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