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Category: chickpeas

hummus plate

Have you ever tried to replicate the hummus you get in a really authentic Middle Eastern restaurant? It is always so creamy and smooth. I could never figure out their trick. My aunt and uncle just got back from Israel, where they ate hummus with a spoon as a meal, and they too didn’t know how Israelis got their hummus so darn creamy and delicious.

Hummus became a central topic of conversation this weekend when I visited my aunt and uncle. This might have bored many dinner guests half to death, but I was all ears. Could the mystery be solved?

cherry blossoms  vancouver

Summer is coming! Or, practically here if you’re lucky enough to live in Vancouver like me. There is a prime example above — the spring cherry blossoms in Vancouver are one of my most favourite things in the world! Along with my sister, of  course. Here is a picture of us enjoying ice cream by the sea on a hot day in March… sorry to rub it in. ;)

Baked Pakora

35 COMMENTS

pakora1

I LOVE Indian food!

Ever since I made socca, chickpea flour has become a staple in my house and I have been looking for more recipes to use it in.  These baked pakora were a fantastic solution – easy to make, full of veggies and delicious!

If you have eaten Indian lately you know it is not the lightest of meals (at least the westernized version of it) and it may leave you feeling a little bogged down. So if you are looking to skip all the oil but still get some delicious Indian flavor these baked pakora are what you’re looking for! I am not claiming to be replacing the deep fried ones but I can try my darndest!

When I made these I only had about 1/4 of a head of cauliflower so I just increased all the other veggies a bit and they worked out really well, so feel free to play around with the ratios a bit, especially if it means avoiding a trip to the grocery store.

I found using a baking stone will help prevent burning (heat it in the oven for ~10 minutes first while it preheats). I love my baking stone for homemade pizza, crisping up leftovers, homemade free-form bread etc — it is an essential kitchen item for me!

Make sure you watch the pakoras carefully so that they don’t burn and keep your oven fan on.

They also re-heat well in the oven (not microwave) — so hope for leftovers! If you have a baking stone, heat it in a hot oven (~10min), then place the pakora on the hot stone and reheat them in the oven for ~8-10 min at 350-375 F. This will help crisp them up again beautifully.

Enjoy!

Baked Pakora Recipe

Baked Pakora
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: ~50 pakora
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups Chickpea flour (aka - Gram flour, Garbanzo flour, besan)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp garam masala or curry powder (or~ 2 tbsp of your favorite curry paste)
  • 1.5 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp crushed red pepper
  • ½ tsp garlic powder or 2 cloves fresh, crushed garlic
  • -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  • ½ head small cauliflower, chopped into small bite-size pieces (about 3 cups)
  • 1 small/medium onion, finely chopped
  • ½ cup peas (fresh/frozen)
  • 1 large carrot, grated
  • 1 small red potato, grated
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 500F. Grease a large baking sheet very well with your favorite mild, cooking oil
  2. In a large bowl, mix together dry ingredients (down to the dashes in the ingredient list). Stir in enough water to create a batter, almost pancake-batter consistency, but a little thicker. It took me about 1¼ cups of water. Don't add extra water! If you're using curry paste instead of powder mix it into the batter with the water. Let batter sit.
  3. Prepare veggies and then dump them all into the batter, mixing well to coat
  4. Using a tablespoon (the kind you eat with), take scoops of battered veggies and drop onto the well oiled baking sheet
  5. Bake for 8-9 minutes, then flip and bake another 10 minutes, until golden brown. You can spray or brush them with oil before putting them back in the oven if you're looking to resemble the deep-fried version a little more closely.
  6. Serve hot with 'Raita' or an Indian tomato sauce or just enjoy them on their own! I like to mix garlicky, tomato sauce with a little greek yogurt or sour cream and some curry paste to taste.


Green-Double-Bean Salad

COMMENT

Well the holidays are over and it’s back to the same old routine. If you are looking for some extra time to relax why not toss this salad together and keep it in the fridge for quick lunches all week!

I have never thought to put green beans in a salad before, but I love them so I was intrigued by this recipe. Also anything with avocado in it must be good right? I once saw someone munching on these string beans raw and had to try it myself —–> YUM! As long as you get fresh, crunchy ones they are a delicious snack.  Green beans are also rich in many vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, C and K, folate, potassium and manganese.

Add a grain such as barley, kamut, spelt or wheat berries to make this salad even more satisfying.

green-bean-salad

Green-Double-Bean Salad

Modified from Rose Reisman’s Complete Light Kitchen

Ingredients

• 8 oz green beans, chopped into thirds or left whole
• 340mL can corn kernels, drained
• 190z can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
•1 large diced red bell pepper
• 1/2 cup diced red onion
• 1 large diced ripe avocado

Dressing

• 2 tsp lime or lemon zest
• 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice
• 3 tbsp olive oil
• 1 tsp minced fresh garlic
• 1 tsp minced fresh ginger
• 1 tsp minced jalapeño
• Pinch salt and black pepper
• 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (or basil/parsley)

1. Steam the green beans just until bright green and still crisp, about 3 minutes. Place immediately under cold water and rinse until the beans are no longer warm. Place in a serving bowl.

2. Spray small non-stick skillet with cooking oil and place over medium heat. Sauté corn, stirring frequently, until browned, approximately 8 minutes. Add to the serving bowl, along with the chickpeas, bell pepper, onion and avocado.

3. Whisk the zest, juice, oil, garlic, ginger, jalapeño, salt and pepper together in a small bowl and toss with salad. Chill.

Do you have a favorite vegetable? It’s hard to decide (because there are SO many to love) but I love beet.! They are so tasty, they can be used and prepared in so many different ways (including their delicious greens) and they make everything pink! (Clearly a key point.)

upbeet dip

A few fun beet facts:

  • In many cultures the belief persists that if a man and a woman eat from the same red beet then they will fall in love.
  • Beets can be made into a wine that tastes similar to port.
  • In Australia, a true Oz-style burger must have a slice or two of beets. Even McDonalds and Burger King have had to include it in their menus.

One of my favorite ways to use beets is in a beany dip. They make it pink, which kids (and adults) love. I have even had people that hate beans and beets say they like this dip. So give these recipes a try!

upbeet dip

Beet Black Bean Dip

1 can Black Beans, drained and rinsed
2 large cooked Red Beets, peeled and diced
2 large cloves Garlic, minced (…or 3 cloves if you love garlic like me!)
1 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
1 tbsp Soy Sauce
2 tbsp Olive Oil
1 tsp Cumin Powder 
Couple shakes of cayenne pepper, or crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp Black Pepper, freshly ground 
1/4 cup Parsley, chopped
Sea Salt to taste
 

Place all ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth, stopping to scrape down the side of the processor during the process.  Add a small amount of water or olive oil if the dip is too dry.  Season with salt, to taste. Garnish with more fresh parsley.   Serve room temperature, or chilled.

Beet Hummus

Source: Marianne

 1 can (19 oz or 540 mL) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2/3 cup cooked beets
1-2 large clove garlic, chopped
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp tahini (can be replaced with PB if needed)
juice of 1 lemon
1/3 – 1/2 cup fresh dill
sea salt & pepper to taste
1/4 – 1/3 cup water
 

Combine all ingredients except water in a food processor, and blend until combined. Add water until desired consistency is reached (you may not need any). Allow to sit for several hours in the fridge before serving to let flavors meld.



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- Formerly known as Apron Strings and Healthy Things -

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