Client Shannon recently brought this delicious dish to the CLA Team Holiday Party. Everyone raved about it so we asked Shannon to tell us more AND share the recipe.
I figured I was getting enough protein, but when Coach Lesley had me sit down and actually map out what I ate most days, suddenly my chronic fatigue made a lot more sense.
I’d heard that “man can’t live by bread alone,” but being a woman, clearly I figured it was worth a try. Turns out it doesn’t work for us either.
So, time to boost the protein. I’m both a vegetarian and a picky eater, so Lesley had her work cut out for her. It took some time, but we did manage to come up with a good list that would satisfy my taste and my needs.
High on the list: legumes. I already eat a fair number of these, but it was time to move the mighty protein-packing, nitrogen-fixing bean from the side to the center of the plate.
My partner Richard does the vast majority of the cooking at our house (OK, truth be told, I’m in charge of popcorn and toast). He was up for the challenge of figuring out a good way to bump up our protein but keep it tasty, bike-travel friendly, and low-prep (for me). I’M NOT A PRINCESS, YOU’RE THE PRINCESS.
We actually came up with several options, but our by-far favorite is his chickpea salad. We found several recipes on the Internet, but Richard modified his to get even more protein, some crunch, the right heat, and the right texture.
It tastes a lot like egg salad (Richard says it’s also reminiscent of tuna salad), but it’s actually vegan. To raise the protein even more, he ditched the mayonnaise and subbed in a vegan mayo made of silken tofu. We seriously eat enough chipotle powder to keep Texas in business, so there’s that (the recipe below calls for somewhat less than we use, so feel free to assume that’s “to taste”). Subsequent versions included celery and radishes for crunch, and if you make this without dill pickles, I will think less of you.
The result is really good and will make pretty much anyone happy: it’s gluten-free, vegan, filling and delicious. One thing: this makes a whole lot of chickpea salad, but that’s because Richard wanted to use the full 16 oz of tofu. We don’t think this will freeze, but have yet to have it last long enough in our house to need to freeze it. It’s that good.
Vegan Chickpea Salad
2 15oz cans chickpeas
1 stalk celery
3-4 green onions
6-7 baby dill pickles
1-2 garlic cloves
Salt, pepper, chipotle powder.
In a large bowl, rough-mash the chickpeas.
Thin-slice the celery and green onions; finely chop the garlic and pickles.
Add salt, pepper, and chipotle powder to taste.
Mix with vegan mayo until desired consistency is reached.
1 block (16oz) silken tofu
4 Tbsp vegetable oil
3 Tbsp cider vinegar or lemon juice
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp agave nectar
1 tsp salt
½ tsp chipotle powder to taste
Put all ingredients in a food processor and mix until well blended.
For anyone interested, ½ cup of chickpeas has 120 calories, 20 g carbohydrate, 6 g protein, and 6 g dietary fiber.