Sometimes I go to Whole Foods just for the samples. Admit it. You do the same thing. Or at the very least there’s a silent “YES! when you find samples just waiting to be tasted. Usually I’m happy enough with a few cubes of cheese but when there’s an actual product to try–even better. A few weeks ago, a lovely woman was standing by with a basket of pita chips and variety of hummuses to try. From spicy to feta to garlic roasted, they all looked fantastic. But what stopped me dead in my tracks was the kalamata olive hummus. I’ve eaten plenty of olive tapanade in my day, but addition of chickpeas and tahini intrigued me. I sampled, celebrated and brought some home to share with my husband. It was gone in hours.
How do you eat your chickpeas? Most likely it’s in hummus. If you’re really fancy, you might roast them with a little curry or chili powder. But aside from that, really when do you have chickpeas as a feature ingredient of a meal? I keep dried chickpeas in my collection of mason jar beans and dried goods ingredients, but I rarely use them. Sometimes I’ll make hummus, or toss them in with some white beans or as part of a multi-bean chili. My black beans come and go, refilling the quart sized jar every other month or so, and the kidney and white beans go almost as quickly. But those poor wrinkly chickpeas just sit there. So in an effort to highlight this special ingredient (and avoid a trip to the store for different ingredients, I embarked on a dish to make chickpeas shine.