Chickpea Salad with Pesto
The View From the Great Island
Chickpea Salad with Pesto is perfect for potlucks and working lunches alike. This colorful Mediterranean bean salad should be on any healthy meal plan.
- 2 15-ounce cans chickpeas, drained and well rinsed
- 1 cup finely diced bell peppers, assorted colors
- ½ cup thin sliced Persian cucumber (these are the small ones,) do not peel
- ½ cup small mozzarella pearls
- ½ cup halved or quartered cherry tomatoes, assorted colors
- ⅓ cup quartered small radishes
- ⅓ cup diced black olives
- ¼ cup finely minced red onion
- fresh cracked black pepper
- pesto dressing (this will make more than you need, use the rest on pasta!)
- 2 large handfuls fresh basil leaves and part of the stems (I used my whole TJs basil plant)
- 1 small garlic clove, smashed and peel removed
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- a good grating of fresh Parmesan (as much or as little as you like)
- ¼ cup olive oil, give or take
- salt to taste
- ¼ cup toasted pine nuts (toast in a little olive oil in a skillet for several minutes, stirring constantly until they turn nutty brown.)
- lemon wedges
- Put the drained, rinsed, and dried chickpeas in a large salad bowl along with the rest of the salad ingredients.
- To make the pesto dressing, process the basil, garlic, and lemon briefly until it breaks down into a thick paste. Add the cheese and enough olive oil to make a loose pourable consistency. Add salt to taste, and more cheese, and/or lemon if you like.
- Toss the salad with just enough pesto to thoroughly coat everything. Serve topped with the toasted pine nuts, a good grinding of fresh cracked pepper, and accompanied by a couple of lemon wedges.