This requires effort…

I’ve challenged myself to come up with seven days of interesting vegetarian recipes. More often than not, I feel like I could be vegetarian 100% of the time, but then I really like bacon.

For the first day of the challenge, I went with my old standby: NYT Cooking. I found a recipe for spicy chickpeas with ginger. It can be found right here.

I’ll be honest with you- it takes some work. However, it is most certainly worth the effort. This recipe was really REALLY good.

Unlike the NYT Cooking version of the recipe, I chose to use canned chickpeas. I rinsed them and added them to a fairly big pot, but halved the water called for in the recipe (6 cups). Bring the chickpeas to a boil for a couple of minutes. Then reduce the heat to a simmer and add to the pot: one onion (quartered), two sprigs of parsley, four cloves of garlic and one tbsp of olive oil. Continue to simmer for about 45 minutes, eventually adding two tsp of sea salt.

Then, in a fairly large skillet over medium heat, add a couple tbsp of vegetable oil. When it’s warmed, add one large onion (diced). Cook it until the onion has nicely browned. It’ll take about 10-15 minutes. Be sure to stir it frequently.

After that, reduce the heat slightly and add a bay leaf, three cloves of garlic, two tbsp of grated ginger, two tsp of ground coriander, two tsp of ground cumin, 1/4tsp of ground cardamom, and a 1/2 tsp of sea salt and black pepper. Add to that 2 large tomatoes (peeled and diced). Continue cooking for about five minutes.

When your chickpeas are done, strain them but reserve a couple cups of the broth. You’ll know they’re done because they’ll be al dente and not mushy.

Add the chickpeas and broth to your spicy tomato mixture. Simmer until it’s reduced to a sauce-like consistency. Check your seasonings and adjust as required. Toss in the juice of half a lemon and serve with more diced tomatoes, minced jalapeño, a couple tbsp of diced onion and some chopped cilantro.

Hassle level: Like 4 out of 10. It seemed to be a hard go for a while. The recipe was also a little vague so I made my own interpretations. However, the flavours were amazing and it is a definite make again!

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