Chickpeas are a staple in the Middle East are now used the world over. Known as garbanzo beans in the USA and ceci in Italy they are adaptable, a kitchen staple and can be used in so many more ways than hummus.
Buy your chickpeas tinned. Different varieties have markedly different textures—some need more cooking, some are perfect for hummus as they are, or cook from dried.
To speed up the cooking time of dried chickpeas place them in a bowl, add a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda, then cover with boiling water and leave to soak overnight. The next day, rinse and simmer until they are the desired texture.
Here are 10 wonderful recipes using chickpeas.
1. Apple spiced hummus
In a twist on a traditional hummus, this autumnal version contains apple, nut butter and warming spices of cinnamon and nutmeg.
No cooking required just blend and serve.
2. Spiced roasted chickpeas
Roasted chickpeas are very easy to make, dangerously moreish and make perfect snacks, or pre-dinner nibbles.
Simply rinse some cooked chickpeas, coat them in your choice of flavourings and roast until crispy. Enjoy.
3. Moroccan fish with chickpeas and lentils
Everybody loves a one-pot dinner as it means less washing up.
In this dish chickpeas are braised with coriander, garlic, lemon and spices, then the fish is added and the entire dish baked until done.
4. Oven baked falafels
Falafels are really easy to make and if you bake them rather than deep fry you can make them oil free.
This recipe uses soaked dried chickpeas and flavours the falafels with lots of coriander.
5. Middle Eastern spiced chicken with a chickpea pilaf
Pairing legumes and rice is a classic way of serving complete protein.
This pilaf is flavoured with cranberries and warming Middle Eastern spices then topped with spiced chicken.
Perfect for a cooler evening, and the leftovers would make a good packed lunch.
6. Kung Po chickpeas
Inspired by the chicken version, these Kung Po chickpeas are sticky, spicy and very affordable to make.
Perfect for a homemade healthy takeaway!
7. Chickpea soup (Minestrone de Ceci)
A handful of chickpeas can turn a humdrum soup into a main meal.
This Italian-inspired recipe will warm and satisfy you on the coldest of winter days. Fill a flask and take to work for a desk lunch.
8. Creamy chickpea curry
A chickpea round-up wouldn’t be complete without a curry.
In this version, vegetables are fried in coconut oil for extra flavour and the sauce is made with creamy coconut milk.
Served on a bed of quinoa it is a warming, protein packed meal.
9. Spicy lemon chickpea casserole
I have been making this spicy lemon chickpea casserole for years.
Simply cook chickpeas in a spiced tomato sauce, add lemon and a handful of vegetables and serve with rice.
It freezes well so makes a perfect emergency freezer meal!
10. Cinnamon chickpea brownies
These indulgent brownies contain chickpeas, as well as being gluten free, dairy free, egg free and oil free. They look amazing and no one would guess they are good for you too.
The blogger behind this recipe suggests making a double batch, which seems a sensible idea!