For the Chickpea Lovers

April 6, 2009


The humble chickpea.  I love them more than almost any food that is not a french fry, chocolate, or caramel.  I love them pureed into hummus, I love them in soups, I love them in grain salads, I love them in green salads.  I love them straight out of the can.  If I weren’t vegetarian, I would probably like them with green eggs and ham.

This salad is a great one when you want something healthy and crunchy but with some heft.  The chickpeas marinate for at least half an hour in an intoxicating mixture of olive oil, garlic, cumin, and lemon juice.  If you plan ahead and let them swim around overnight in the refrigerator, they taste even better.  Before you serve it, you add slivers of red onion, thinly sliced radishes and chunks of cucumber.  It comes together quickly and lasts well in the refrigerator for another day or so.  It’s also nice and flexible.  You can serve it as a side (just make sure it’s room temperature instead of cold), or make it more salad like by adding lots of arugula and a little more olive oil and lemon juice.

Marinated Chickpea Salad with Radishes and Cucumber
Inspired by Food and Wine
6 servings

The original recipe calls for only one can of chickpeas but I double that amount here.  If you prefer your salad to be more vegetable heavy and less bean-y, use only one can.  If you are going to use a regular cucumber (rather than an English one), be sure to peel it and scrape out the seeds.

1/8 cup olive oil, or more to taste
Juice of  1 medium lemon
1 garlic cloved, minced
1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 15-ounce cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 large English cucumber, halved lengthwise, then thinly sliced crosswise
6 large radishes, thinly sliced
1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, lemon zest, and cumin and season with salt and pepper.  Add the chickpeas and let marinate for at least 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.  If you plan to marinate longer than 2 hours, cover and refrigerate.  Before serving, stir in the cucumbers, radishes, onion, and parsley and season with salt and pepper.


  1. Chickpeas are so versatile. This salad sounds great. Would be great with arugula too.

    Comment by lisaiscooking — April 6, 2009 @ 10:17 pm

  2. I’m definitely a chickpea lover! The radishes really make things look so summery!

    Comment by kickpleat — April 6, 2009 @ 11:42 pm

  3. i like all three – chickpeas, radish and cucumber! love the photo!

    Comment by veggiebelly — April 7, 2009 @ 6:18 pm

  4. Intoxicating indeed. My mouth is watering at that list of flavors. I can visualize this as a side to many a summer BBQ.

    Comment by Aimee — April 8, 2009 @ 12:54 am

  5. I love chickpeas! I love them so much. I want this salad on my plate right now!

    Comment by Andrea — April 14, 2009 @ 3:27 am

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