Garbanzo, chickpea, either way you were raised to say it, these little fiber packed legumes are worth their weight in gold, when it comes to flavor. I prefer to say ‘chickpea’ because after all, they really do look like little baby chick heads up close. Cute and delicious.
For a couple years now, I’ve been cooking my own chickpeas using bags of dried peas I find easily at a nearby Middle Eastern market. Doing it this way saves a lot of money, in the long run, but it is also healthier, because the beans I make myself are sodium free. I simply soak 1-2 cups of dried peas overnight in a big pot of water, drain them, then add about a teaspoon of baking soda to the fresh water when I cook them in order to soften them up even more. The baking soda really works wonders!
I think it’s better in general to limit the amount of canned food one eats, and often canned beans have a lot more sodium in them than you want, as well. But if you’re in a hurry or just don’t have the patience to cook your own, don’t skip over this recipe, just use canned. Your body will be happy that you’re enjoying a plant-based meal this week!
This is one of those quick to assemble recipes that costs very little to make, too, while still keeping lunch interesting. I saw a chickpea salad bowl at a swank café in my neighborhood for $10, so think of the money you could save by making your own food every week, instead of eating out: $50/week, $200/month, $2400/year…let that figure sink into the ol’garbanzo. Making your own lunch is worth it; I firmly believe that there’s no such thing as an exquisite grab it and go work lunch except, of course, the ones you make yourself. All you need is a little time and baking soda.
-Amy at Flatout