From Book 4: Swiss Cheese & Sibling Rivalry
First, a quick explanation for anyone not yet familiar with my cozy mystery series. While it’s not a recipe book, each book does have about 8-10 recipes. Most (though not all) involve either cheese, salami or bread, keeping in mind the Whine & Cheese bistro theme.
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For a quick little back-story on how the recipe came about, scroll on down to the bottom. Otherwise, let’s get to it!
For our first official summer weekend, this is a great accompaniment to any BBQ. It pretty much goes with everything.
You will need:
- 1 large can chickpeas, drain and rinse well
- 1/4 cup good quality, light-tasting olive oil
- 4 tablespoon lemon juice (the juice from those plastic lemons works fine)
- 1/2 of a large, firm tomato or 1 small tomato, diced
- 1 green onion (white and green parts), diced
- 1 tablespoon chopped, fresh cilantro (a must- don’t skip this ingredient and it must be fresh, not dried)
- 1 teaspoon dried cumin (also a must)
- a few shakes of dried dill weed (about 1/4 teaspoon)
- 1 tablespoon chopped, fresh parsly
- 1 teaspoon chopped, fresh chives
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons chunks of feta cheese (optional)
Combine all ingredients, mix and enjoy. Keeps well in the fridge for a few days, if you don’t eat it before then. To take it over the top, if you are familiar with a good quality feta cheese, it’ll make the salad to die for.
Note: if you are adding cheese to this dish, it should be eaten the same day.Don’t be afraid to experiment. I often put a diced radish in this salad too.
Here’s a story about a girl named Bushra. She was 16 at the time that I wrote this, and made the best damn chickpea salad that she sold at her Syrian food stall at the local farmers market. Well, second best. Smirk.
I didn’t want to ask her for the recipe: a magician never reveals their tricks, right? So, I set out to re-create it myself. I have a pretty good palate and can pick out a lot of flavours. That, combined with some internet searches for somewhat similar recipes, gave me a good base to start with.
I like to take what appeals to me from each recipe, combine it all together, and add my own “bit of this and a bit of that.”
The end product (in my totally un-biased opinion, of course), was simply Wow. Now you be the judge! Let me know if you’v e tried it and added anything different so that I can try it, too! This time, I added in some celery and green peppers and probably put double the cilantro. Yum.