01 August 2011

Garbanzo Alinados con Alcaparras

Or, "Garbanzo A. A."  It's a seriously fabulous salad or side dish!  Packed full of flavor (capers, cilantro, paprika...), and featuring the nutritional greatness of the garbanzo bean (a.k.a. chick pea), you can't miss with this one.  

One lesson learned on this one, is to follow the recipe.  It turned out well, and was a hit at a dinner party!  The second time, I threw together whatever was left over from the first round, and it wasn't so great.  And, if you're not so sure about capers, I'll let you in on something - this is the first recipe I ever used capers in.  Go for it!  They're a key part of the flavor oomph.

I have this recipe in my "go-to" box (I really do have one), thanks to a delicious lunch about a year ago.  Bob Oakes, who some of you may know, brought it to a Burns Street Square Boxcar Cafe Steering Committee lunch.  I begged him for the recipe, and he graciously dug out the cookbook from which issued the following:

  • 2 c. garbanzo beans
  • 2 T each: onions, red peppers, cilantro (chopped or minced)
  • 1 T salted capers (different from the plain capers in a jar)
  • 1 yolk of a hard boiled egg (See this post for a nifty way to peel eggs.)
  • 1/4 c. olive oil
  • 2 T vinegar (red or white wine vinegar)
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • Paprika and pepper to taste
  • Soak dried garbanzo beans overnight, covered in 2+ inches of water.  
  • Simmer for 1 hour, or cook in crock pot all day.  Crock pot cooking works GREAT in the summer, when you hate to heat up the kitchen.  Canned beans work just fine if you're in a hurry.
  • Mix ingredients together in a large bowl.  Prep in the same bowl you serve from to cut down on dirty dishes.
  • TASTE it!  The salted capers are quite salty.  DO NOT add extra salt without tasting it first.  If you can't find salted capers, you may need to add a fair bit of salt to get the same punch.  The garbanzo beans may absorb a lot of the flavor otherwise.
  • Chill until ready to serve.
Yields ~4 servings (though I always double it).

*Recipe from: 
One Pot Spanish by Penelope Casas (page 10)
Nearly every recipe in the book looked as tasty and interesting as this one.  It might be worth investing in it, if you're looking for inspiration.

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