It’s easy to run out of ideas for what to eat for lunch and dinner, especially when you don’t have anything prepped already (mentally or physically). I try to avoid this problem by always keeping a few essentials ready in my kitchen that I can “mix and match” to suit my mood. Chickpeas and spinach are always on my essentials list – I created this recipe for creamy chickpeas by chance, just by pulling together a few of my favorite ingredients.
This is the kind of dish that I like to make a little extra of because it’s so versatile. There are so many ways to put these creamy chickpeas to work – you can serve them as a main paired with your favorite whole grains like brown rice or quinoa, or as a side with pita bread or toasted sourdough bread, or even as a filling for a pita sandwich with falafel or on top of a salad. Alternatively, if you like soups and stews, you could add more water to make a soup instead. You can avoid the cheese and keep this recipe vegan instead but I really like the depth and smooth, velvety texture that the addition of cheese creates. This recipe is gluten-free but sneaks in a lot of vegetables to make it hearty and balanced.
If you try this out, let me know what you think! I love seeing your versions of my recipes so send me a note via the comments or on Instagram @theindiaedition.
- 100ml or just under ½ cup thick tomato sauce
- 100ml or just under ½ cup water
- 2 heaped tbsp cream cheese or goat cheese or feta
- 2 cups or 400g or 14oz cooked chickpeas
- 50g or ½ cup cauliflower florets, in small chunks and par-boiled
- 25-30g or ¾ cup chopped spinach
- 1 large piece of carrot (peeled but left whole - this is to cut acidity)
- 1 tsp olive oil, grapeseed oil or any other oil of your choice
- ¼ tsp dried herbs: mix of basil, thyme, oregano and sage - or use what you have on hand or even any similar prepared blend
- A few sprinkles of freshly ground pepper
- Salt, to taste
- In a large pot on low heat, add the oil and herbs.
- When the herbs are fragrant (about a minute) add the tomato sauce, carrot cooked chickpeas and par-boiled cauliflower. Sauté for a few minutes.
- Add approximately 50ml of water - if your tomato sauce is thick and has a consistency more similar to a paste, add more water up to 100ml.
- Add the cream cheese/goat cheese/feta and stir till melted and consistent.
- Finally, add chopped spinach and stir until just wilted.
- Serve warm, as a main, or as a side with pita bread, toasted sourdough bread, as a filling for a pita sandwich with falafels or salad. Alternatively, add more water in step 3 to make a soup instead.