Tag Archives: chickpea

Cauliflower in turmeric chickpea batter and flights of fancy

About seven years ago, Léo found an abandoned baby turtle dove under an oak tree. I have fond memories of him/her sharing our mealtimes, sitting and pecking in a cardboard nesting box on the kitchen or terrace table. Léo fed him different grains, but he had a particular penchant for couscous. The baby dove grew big and strong (all the couscous), and upped and left us in September to migrate with his family for the winter.

Turtle doves come back to their birthplace, and every Spring I imagine I see our grown-up baby, especially when one approaches the house. Today I’m pretty sure my wishful inkling is spot-on; this lunchtime, while we were enjoying lamb tagine on the terrace, a very self-assured adult dove perched himself at the end of the table and looked pointedly at my plate. It was a look that definitely said: ‘and where is my couscous?’

The Bells, Edgar Allan Poe

Turmeric (more information here), or Indian Solid Gold’, has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for over 4,000 years for its wound-healing and anti-inflammatory properties. It is prevalent in Indian cuisine and is believed to be one of the reasons that cancer rates in India are significantly lower than in Western countries.

Curcumin is poorly absorbed by the body, but research show that cooking it in liquid, with added fat and black pepper facilitates absorption.

Ingredients (serves 3-4)

150g chickpea (gram) flour

1 pinch of salt, freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder (or better, crushed fresh turmeric root)

1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 clove of garlic, crushed

1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

150ml lukewarm water

4 medium-sized cauliflower florets

Olive oil

Sift the flour, seasoning and bicarbonate of soda into a mixing bowl, and add the water, mixing well to form a batter. Leave to rest for about 30 minutes. If the mixture thickens too much, add more water.

Rince the cauliflower and slice into pieces roughly 4mm thick. Coat well with the batter and fry in olive oil until golden.

Apple chickpea cake (gf) and competitive shoppers

applechickpeacake

Yesterday was one of the warmest days of the year so far and, in the afternoon, I went on an ice-cream dash to our local supermarket. I’ve never thought of myself as being the least bit competitive, but I’m now wondering if I shouldn’t reconsider following a rather random conversation with another shopper at the checkout:

Random Monsieur: ‘I’ve got two tubs of ice-cream’

Me: ‘I’ve got three’

RM: ‘I’m on a motorbike’

Me: ‘I’m in a car’

RM: ‘I haven’t got a freezer bag’

Just when I was about to boast that I, Miss Organised, did have one, I realised that he was actually angling to jump the queue in front of me. I was rather disappointed because I was beginning to quite enjoy the harmless one-upmanship; It certainly beat thinking horribly uncharitable thoughts about the basket contents of my fellow shoppers, which seems to be my mind’s default activity while waiting in line.

marketman

I’m quite addicted to this cake. It couldn’t be simpler and it’s spicy and satisfying, as well as being incredibly healthy. Chickpeas are a rich, tasty and versatile source of amino acids, fibre, manganese, iron, zinc and folates.

Ingredients (serves 8-10)

300g chickpeas (garbanzo beans), pre-cooked and rinsed (you can use tinned)

3 eggs, beaten

4 tablespoons honey (preferably raw)

2 apples, peeled and finely chopped

1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

2 teaspoons garam masala spice (or other mixed spice to taste)

100g raisins (pre-cooked in a tablespoon of rum for about 10 minutes)

Preheat the oven to 150°C. Grease and prepare a medium-sized cake tin, round or square. Pulse the chickpeas in a food processor until they reach a paste-like consistency and then mix in the other ingredients, except the raisins, one at a time, continuing to pulse. Add the raisins last and mix by hand. Pour the mixture into the cake tin and bake for between 50 minutes and an hour (a fork inserted into the centre should come out clean). Best served cold.

 

Gallery

Cod in chickpea batter (gf)

This gallery contains 3 photos.

When I asked for cod filet for three this morning, the fishmonger asked if it was for three normal people or three rugbymen. I had replied that it was for three normal people before wondering if this wasn’t perhaps stretching … Continue reading