Greek Chickpea Salad
Winter in Southern Oregon can be a great time of year for many people. There are so many things to do and see. There are myriad of fun activities such as skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling. But, by the time February rolls around, I’ve grown tired of winter… Those feelings only get further amplified by unexpected snow falls, a foggy day or rain. I’ve grown bored of wearing tall boots, long coats and hats. I want my sandals, bright warm sunshine and blue skies back. I recognize that spring is “just around the corner” but, there are times I just need a little bit of proof…
Finding proof that warm spring weather is on its way was much easier than I thought. As I was clipping fresh sprigs of rosemary from my garden for my Greek Chickpea Salad, I noticed a single blue flower on the tip of one of the rosemary stems. As, I walked through the yard, other small signs of spring started to appear. My tarragon and chives were starting to poke through the soil. There were tiny buds on the branches of the cherry and crab apple trees. All simple reminders that spring is nearly here!
Fresh rosemary. Rosemary is a wonderfully fragrant herb used in many Mediterranean dishes. I use rosemary frequently because I love the flavor and because it is so readily available to me. I use it in many savory dishes that contain lamb, chicken or pork. I use fresh rosemary in salads and homemade baked bread as well. It’s a versatile herb that has earned a permanent place in my kitchen. If you have the opportunity to plant rosemary in your yard, by all means do so!
My Greek Chickpea Salad is prepared with canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans), crunchy green cucumber, bright red grape tomatoes, red onion, tangy kalamata olives, dressed with a lemon garlic rosemary dressing and topped with feta cheese. My Greek Chickpea Salad makes a wonderful side salad or as a main course for an easy vegetarian lunch. Enjoy! Tessa
- 1 – 15 ounce can chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
- 1/2 cup cucumber (chopped)
- 1/2 cup tomatoes (chopped)
- 1/4 cup red onion (chopped)
- 1/4 cup parsley (chopped)
- 1/4 cup kalamata olives (sliced)
- 3 – 4 Tbs olive oil
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1/2 tsp garlic paste (or to taste)
- 1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
- 1/4 tsp black pepper (or to taste)
- 1/4 – 1/2 tsp rosemary (finely minced and to taste)
- feta cheese (optional)
In a medium sized bowl, toss together the chickpeas, cucumber, tomato, red onion, parsley, and kalamata olives, In a separate bowl whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic paste, salt, pepper and rosemary. Taste the dressing and correct your seasonings. Be aware that fresh rosemary can easily overpower a dish. Add the dressing to the garbanzo mixture. Mix lightly. Top with optional feta cheese. Makes 2 lunches or 6 smaller side dish servings.