Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

by Anne Bennett on August 11, 2015

chickpea salad 3

Chickpeas — not a food item that I think of as glamorous. But I eat them because they’re low in calories, high in fiber and good for me.  Just like kale, which, let’s face it, isn’t glamorous either.

Kale — it’s what’s for dinner, if you’re a llama.

Unless you’re a llama. But I digress.

Last week’s email from Weight Watchers featured “no sweat meals for summer,” including this Chickpea and Feta Salad. Here it is with the name slightly changed, by me, to give it a more palatable (i.e. glamorous) persona.

Several years ago I posted a similar salad from Ina Garten that had a good deal more olive oil in it along with cucumber, tomatoes, fresh basil and mint. Think of this as a slimmed-down, edited version of Ina’s.

I served it on a platter with halved grape tomatoes, hard-boiled eggs (that I confess to buying already cooked and shelled) and mini whole wheat pita bread. Store-bought hummus rounded out our dinner. BTW, this is what I love about 21st-century cooking: you can buy almost anything (hard-cooked eggs, hummus, even rotisserie chickens) already cooked and ready to serve. Rhetorical question, this, but who needs an oven?

Although the WW recipe didn’t include cucumber, I diced some up and tossed it in for added crunch. And glamor.  OK so I lied. This ain’t glamorous, but it is a really good, easy-to-prepare, summer salad. Leftovers make a fast, satisfying lunch with toasted whole wheat pita.

2 cups canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp. scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 large red bell pepper, diced
1/2 cucumber, peeled and diced (optional but good)
2 Tbsp. fresh parsley, minced
9 large olives, black or green, pitted and chopped (I used Kalamatas)
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 Tbsp. olive oil
3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. lemon zest
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

In a medium bowl, combine chickpeas, garlic, scallions, red bell pepper, parsley, olives and feta cheese. Toss to combine.

In a small bowl whisk together olive oil and lemon juice. Pour over chickpeas and season to taste with pepper. Garnish with lemon zest.

Serves 6
WW Points per serving (about 1/2 cup): 4

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