Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Chickpea and Spinach Salad with Cumin Dressing and Yogurt Sauce

Recipe from The Food You Crave by Ellie Krieger
Husband-Tested in Alice’s Kitchen

Our son, Kurt and his wife, Marimar, arrived last night from their home in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico. They are here for the holidays. They had a late flight and had been in transit most of the day, so I knew they’d be hungry. I made Shepherd’s Cottage Pie (recipe on this blog) and then tried this salad recipe from the cookbook that Kurt and Marimar had given me for my birthday. I made everything in advance. When we walked in the door, I popped the Shepherd’s Cottage Pie in the oven. I placed a bit of spinach on each person’s plate and spooned a bit of the chickpea mixture on top of that. As we sat down to eat, I drizzled a little of the Yogurt with Orange Essence on the top. We all loved this salad! It went perfectly with the smooth textures of the main dish, but we all thought it would make a great meatless meal on its own. If you're looking to improve your diet for 2010, this salad would be a good start. Check out the nutritional information below.

2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/4 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper
4 cups baby spinach leaves
Yogurt with Orange Essence (recipe below)
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh mint leaves, optional

In a medium bowl combine the chickpeas, parsley and onion. In a small bowl whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, zest, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Pour the dressing over the chickpea mixture and toss to combine. Serve the chickpea salad over a bed of spinach leaves. Top with the yogurt sauce. Sprinkle with mint, if using.

Yogurt with Orange Essence:

1/3 cup lowfat plain yogurt
1/4 teaspoon orange zest
2 tablespoons orange juice
1/2 teaspoon honey

In a small bowl, stir together the yogurt, orange zest, orange juice and honey.
Yield: about 1/2 cup

Nutritional Information for ½ cup chickpea mixture; ½ cup spinach and 1 Tablespoon yogurt mixture:
175 calories
5 grams fiber
6 protein
20 grams carbohydrates
0 milligrams cholesterol
147 milligrams sodium
9 grams fat (saturated fat 1 gram; mono fat 5.5 grams; poly fat 1.5 grams)

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