|The delicious Braised Chickpeas made the
lamb chops seem superfluous.
I’d bought Cuisine when doing a survey of international food magazines. And I clipped this recipe because it looked so intriguing and the ingredients were so enticing. The first time I made it, I followed Cuisine’s advice and served it with some simple lamb chops, ignoring their note that this was “a fine vegetarian meal”. The truth was that the chickpea dish was so good and the mojo so full of flavor, it made the lamb chops seem like an afterthought. I wanted another opportunity to make the dish so Andrew and I called up our very good vegetarian friend, Stephen, and invited him to dinner. Within a week I was making a huge platter of chickpeas laced with baby spinach, topped with grilled cheese, crisp onions and a deliciously vinegary garlic and cilantro sauce. It was a huge hit. And here’s the surprise: it took all of 25 minutes to make.
The recipe comes in four parts. Do not be put off by that. Each part is simple to make and the combination of flavors and textures is delicious. It’s the perfect meatless meal. Here is the recipe for 4 servings.
In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, place the garlic, cumin and sea sat and process until smooth. Add the cilantro, vinegar and olive oil. Process until emulsified and quite vinegar-y tasting.
2 tbs olive oil
2 medium onions, diced
4 garlic cloves, diced
3 small red chillies, crumbled
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tbs tomato paste
16 oz. baby spinach, washed
Sea Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper
8 oz. haloumi cut into ¼ to ½ inch slices
In a large saucepan heat the oil and fry the onion until soft; add the garlic and chilli and ground cumin, fry for 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
Add the tomato paste and chickpeas, toss until chickpeas are well coated; add a little water (¼ cup) and cook for 3-4 minutes.