The recipe for chickpea salad originally appeared in Judy Volhart’s cozy murder mystery Swiss Cheese and Sibling Rivalry (Whine & Cheese Cozy Mystery Series, Book 4). Have you tried this recipe? Tell us in the comments section below.
Better Than Bushra’s Chickpea Salad
Here’s a story about a girl named Bushra. She’s sixteen and makes the best damn chickpea salad that she sells 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 was simply WOW. I’ve been eating this every day straight for over three weeks now and I’m excited to share the recipe. I recommend freezing about 1/3 cup of chickpeas to use in other recipes such as mixing in with rice or into a soup.
1 can chickpeas, well rinsed
¼ cup good quality, light-tasting olive oil
4 tablespoons lemon juice (the plastic lemon full of juice is fine)
½ of a large, firm tomato or 1 small tomato, diced
1 green onion (white and green part), 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 from a jar of chili powder (about ¼ teaspoon, also a must!)
a few shakes of dried dill weed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon chopped fresh chives
Salt & pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chunks of feta cheese (optional)
Combine all ingredients, mix and enjoy. Keeps well 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 that 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. If you’re not sure if something would go well, try it in a small bowl so that the whole salad isn’t ruined if you don’t like it.