Despite the unending rain and clouds that have defined the Eastern seaboard, Memorial Day weekend is in just a few days and the summer season is upon us. Have you thought about what you’ll be making for your barbeque side dishes? Don’t forget chick peas! These versatile and ancient legumes date back at least 7,500 years in the Middle East and are packed with protein and fiber. Plus they’re an ideal base for a variety of dips. You probably know them best in hummus, the popular Middle Eastern dip. But they can used for so much more! They can be thrown whole in salads and are fabulous in soups, stews and chili. Although you can certainly use canned chick peas for your recipes, using dried ones will yield a superior flavor. Dried chickpeas are simple to soften–all it takes is a quick boil and a good simmer on the stove.
So as you plan your menus for this weekend, think of the ancient chick pea which lends itself to a perfect dip that people have been enjoying for 7500 years!
I hope you enjoy the third recipe I created for the USA Dried Pea and Lentil Recipe Contest.
Southwestern Chickpea Dip
Makes 2 cups
This flavorful dip made with chickpeas is a nice variation on traditional hummus. The spicy and tangy taste makes it a perfect appetizer before a southwestern meal. Serve it with tortilla chips or veggies.
2 cups chick peas
2 garlic cloves minced
½ cup cilantro, washed and chopped
Juice from 2 limes
1 chipotle pepper
¼ cup canola oil
1 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons water
In a food processor or blender fitted with a steel blade, puree all of the ingredients until smooth. Gradually add a few teaspoons of water as you puree and stop to scrape the bowl a few times. This process should take up to five minutes to get a really smooth consistency.