Monday, 11 April 2016

Easy Weeknight Curried Chickpeas and Spinach

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Easy Weeknight Curried Chickpeas and Spinach | The Full Helping

Ive never been more grateful for meals that emerge from two cans, a couple of spices, and twenty minutes of time. This recipe for easy weeknight curried chickpeas and spinach fits the bill, and it has surprising depth of flavor for a dish that comes together with so little cooking time. Paired with a simple whole grain, its a perfect formula for a weekday dinner.

Easy Weeknight Curried Chickpeas and Spinach | The Full Helping

Lately, Ive been thinking back to my early days of writing this blog and how different my approach to food was then. Thisis not only true of my food philosophy, which has evolved considerably; its also true of my practical approach to cooking! When I started blogging, dinner was usually quiet, solitary, and leisurely. Id come home from my office job, spend some time thinking about what Id like to make, and then slowly and creatively put something together in the kitchen. Id eat it at my tiny, two-person high top table, usually as I did some editing, with plenty of time to savor the whole experience.

Times have changed. The spirit of culinary creativityis definitely underduress as I enter the last four weeks of my semester. Gone are the days of spontaneous meals and kitchen experiments; Id never manage to get food on the table if I didnt make a weekly menu plan and follow through on it. And as much as I hate to admit it, evening meals are a pretty rushed affair lately. I come home hungry, and theres usually work to be done after I eat, so the goal is simply to execute something healthy and satisfying in minimal time. If I do have a quiet evening, Id rather spend quality time with Steven than labor too much over a recipe.

Easy Weeknight Curried Chickpeas and Spinach | The Full Helping

I really miss a slower pace when it comes to cooking and eating, and Im looking forward to July and August, when Ill have some down time in the kitchen. Ill be diving into recipe development for the new cookbook, which will be a lot of fun.

But for now, Im looking at faster evening meals as a good creative challenge. And its also a good way to connect with all of you, since I know that most readers of this blog have busy lifestyles and need recipes that are healthy, flavorful, and fast.

These curried chickpeas Im sharing today dont breakany cooking molds. They feature a familiar curry spice blend in a rich, tomato based sauce. But theyre bold, flavorful, and satisfying, and if you pair them with a whole grain, youll have a complete meal on your hands in minimal time. The leftovers are also delicious (I think the beans are actually tastier after a night or two in the fridge, so that the flavors can marry), and they can be served with grains, pasta, or piled on top of a few slices of hearty toast.

Easy Weeknight Curried Chickpeas and Spinach

Author:Gena Hamshaw

Recipe type:main dish, entree

Cuisine:vegan, gluten free, soy free, tree nut free

Prep time: 10 mins

Cook time: 15 mins

Total time: 25 mins

Serves:5 cups, or 4 servings

4.0 from 1 reviews

. 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 white or yellow onion, chopped 3 cloves garlic, minced 1 teaspoons curry powder teaspoon ground cumin teaspoon ground coriander teaspoon ground turmeric teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons maple syrup or agave (optional–helps to balance the acidity of the tomatoes) 2 cups cooked chickpeas (or 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinse) 1 14-ounce can fire-roasted, diced tomatoes cup tomato paste 3-4 heaping cups baby spinach 4 cups cooked quinoa, brown rice, or millet, for serving Optional: cup non-dairy yogurt (my favorite is Nancy’s plain soy yogurt) for topping First: if you’re cooking up a whole grain, bring the grain and water to boil, lower to a simmer, and allow the grain to cook while you’re making the curried chickpeas. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a medium sized pot or a large skillet. Add the onions and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and clear (about 5 minutes). Add the curry, cumin, coriander, turmeric, and salt; stir to combine. Add the maple syrup, chickpeas, tomatoes, and tomato past. Use a spoon to break down some of the larger tomato peaces and mix everything well. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes, or until the tomato sauce has thickened. Stir in the baby spinach, cover the chickpeas, and allow the spinach to wilt down. After two minutes or so, stir the mixture well. Serve the curried chickpeas and spinach over your whole grain. Top with two tablespoons of plant-based yogurt, if desired.

Leftover curried chickpeas will keep for up to four days in the fridge, and they can be frozen for up to 1 month.


I hope that these chickpeas can help you out on a night when youre in a pinch and want to create an easy pantry meal. And even if youre not pressed for time, I hope youll enjoy the flavors and the satisfying texture. Feel free to substitute cashew cream, avocado slices, tofu feta, a drizzle of coconut milk, or a spoonful of tahini dressing for the non-dairy yogurt!

Easy Weeknight Curried Chickpeas and Spinach | The Full Helping

And now, back to work. Happy end-of-the-week to all of you, and see you for weekend reading!


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