Marinated Chickpea Salad
This is a Mediterranean salad, specifically a Turkish dish called Nohut Salatasi (literally chickpea salad)
. At our restaurant, Donderos’ Kitchen, we sell quite a bit of it, close but not exactly like the recipe here.
Traditionally this is the summer version of the salad, when fresh vegetables were readily available. In winter, the fresh tomatoes could be replaced with a quarter as much volume of sun-dried tomato cut in thin strips plus a small amount of mild pickled cucumber. The fresh herbs could be replaced with smaller amounts of their dry counterparts. Nowadays, we have fresh vegetables and herbs available year-round.
Easy to make, the dish is tangy and exciting. It can be an appetizer (as one of the meze), or simply an accompaniment for a sandwich or small meat dish. Sometimes a few black olives, such as Kalamata, are used with it as a garnish.
The recipe will serve six, but leftovers store well in the refrigerator for a few days.
2 (14-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4 medium red onion. julienned (cut in narrow strips lengthwise)
4 tablespoons white wine vinegar or distilled white vinegar, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
3 tablespoons minced flat parsley
1 tablespoon minced fresh mint or cilantro
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika, plus more for garnish
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2-3 squirts hot pepper sauce or 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup grape tomatoes, quartered lengthwise
A few Kalamata olives for garnish, optional
Mix drained and rinsed chickpeas, onion, vinegar, salt, sugar and fresh and dried seasonings.
Then stir in the olive oil and tomatoes. Marinate at least half an hour, stirring occasionally. Taste and add salt and/or vinegar, as needed.
Serve sprinkled with more paprika. Garnish with Kalamata olives if desired.