You’re getting a healthier than usual recipe from me for this post. Well you surely don’t think I eat deep fried cheese and cream everyday now, do you? This salad is inspired by one I used to eat in O’Briens Sandwich Bar. This is not an ad, I work near one so I pop in occasionally when I’m in a rush for lunch. I’ve added a few little extras to it. So this is my version of a Beetroot Feta and Chickpea Salad.
Anyway this salad is full of ingredients that I like, it’s healthy and very easy to make. It also keeps well so it’s an great one to prep ahead and an ideal work lunch. If you are making this vegetarian make sure the cheese you use is suitable or leave it off altogether to make it vegan.
It makes a very tasty wrap too
Useful tips & links:
- I’ve used one tin of chickpeas for this, halved between the crispy chickpeas and the hummus. Both can be made in advance and keep well stored in airtight containers, the hummus in the fridge, so if you want to make bigger batches do.
- I usually add cumin and paprika to my hummus but as they are in the crispy chickpeas and seeds I left them out of the hummus.
- I have peeled the cooked chickpeas for the hummus. It’s a tip I saw in Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem a long time ago but I never actually bothered to do it. It only takes a few minutes and it is well worth it. You will have a much smoother creamier dip, but if you are pressed for time you can skip this step.
- The pumpkin seeds can also be done in advance and they are so tasty and addictive so you could do a batch for a healthy snack. Again, store in an airtight container.
- If you want an alternative flavour sprinkle over some Dukkah instead of the chickpeas and seeds.
- Feel free to use vacuum packed cooked beetroot or wrap raw beets in foil and roast them while you are roasting the chickpeas. They are done when easily pierced with a knife.
- For more healthy inspiration have a look at Frances’ beautiful looking Baked Sweet Potato with Braised Lentils and Crumbled Feta.
Beetroot Feta and Chickpea Salad
- 1 x 400g tin of chickpeas, drained and dried on kitchen paper
- 20g of pumpkin seeds
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- A pinch of ground cumin
- ½ a clove of garlic
- 1½ tablespoons of lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons of tahini
- 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 2 roasted beetroot
- 2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar
- 2 roasted red peppers
- 1 large carrot
- 50g of feta cheese
- Salad leaves
- Preheat your oven to 200c/180c fan/gas mark 6. Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.
- In a bowl mix together the olive oil, smoked paprika, cumin and salt.
- Take half of the chickpeas and put them on the baking tray. Drizzle over most of the olive oil mix and toss the chickpeas so that they are thoroughly coated. Roast in the oven for 30-40 minutes until they are crispy, shaking the tray a couple of times to make sure they don’t stick.
- Mix the pumpkin seeds with the remaining olive oil mix and 15 minutes from the end of cooking time for the chickpeas, add the pumpkin seeds to the tray. Remove the tray from the oven when both the chickpeas and seeds are crispy and set aside to cool.
- While they are in the oven, make the hummus and prep the rest of the salad elements. Take the remaining chickpeas and give them a little squeeze so that it pops out and discard the peel. Put the chickpeas, garlic, oil, lemon juice and tahini into a mini food processor or blender. Blitz to a smooth paste and taste for seasoning. Add more lemon or tahini if needed and if you want to thin it further add more extra virgin olive oil.
- Chop the beetroot into bite size cubes and mix with the balsamic vinegar. Slice the red peppers and peel and grate or julienne the carrot.
- When ready to assemble divide some salad leaves between two plates. Add the beetroot, peppers and carrots. Serve a generous amount of hummus in the middle and crumble over the feta cheese. Top with the crunchy chickpeas and seeds and serve immediately.