It's only two sleeps from the big turkey day, and if you're anything like us, it's going to be a busy, food-filled week. But we're all thinking about the dinner that's 48 hours away, not the one that's going to be eaten tonight.
Luckily for us all, this roasted chickpea salad with za'atar is just as good warm as it is chilled, so you can make it today and eat it all the way to Grandma's house, or wherever your holiday travels may take you tomorrow and Thursday. With the combination of fresh mint and za'atar, it's guaranteed to liven up your taste buds, and help you make some pantry space (for the leftovers, of course) by using up that can of chickpeas lingering in there.
(Organized by area of the market)
2 teaspoons za'atar
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 shallot, peeled and thinly sliced
1/2 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
1 small carrot, thinly sliced
1/4 head of red cabbage, thinly sliced
1/4 cup mint, roughly chopped
(We're assuming you already have one 14-ounce can of chickpeas, 1/3 cup vegetable or canola oil, 2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, 2 garlic cloves, and a tablespoon of raisins, but if not, add those to your list too!)
With about a half hour until dinner, preheat the oven to 250° F. In a bowl, mix together the chickpeas, 1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil, lemon juice and zest, 1 teaspoon salt, the za'atar, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Bake the chickpeas for 10 to 15 minutes; meanwhile, heat the 1/3 cup of canola or vegetable oil in a deep-sided pan, slice the shallot, and fry the shallot slices until crunchy. Be sure to check on your chickpeas! If they're crispy—that means they're done!— remove them from the oven so they can cool while you finish preparing the rest of the vegetables.
Mince the garlic, and thinly slice the carrot, fennel, and red cabbage. In a skillet, heat up 1 tablespoon of olive oil, stir in the garlic, and add the rest of the vegetables. Cook for approximately 5 minutes, then remove from heat and stir in the chickpeas, 1/4 cup fresh mint, raisins, and maple syrup. Garnish with the fried shallot, and if you have some in your fridge, feel free to top with feta for extra creaminess. Serve hot or cold, and enjoy!
Photo by James Ransom