Vegan Grandma

Sunday, October 29, 2006

"The animals were not, after all, made for man’s sake, so as to provide him with food by eating them, with clothes by skinning them, or with healthy amusement by trapping, hunting, shooting and tormenting them. All such anthropocentric thinking proves to have been just a part of our inordinate human conceit."

Gilbert Murray, Stoic, Christian and Humanist
Vegan Whole Grain or "Bead" Hummus and Some Interesting Things About Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans)

I had some left-over cooked chick peas, so I made Whole grain Hummus for Lunch. I really liked it. It’s easy to make, and you don’t have the blender to wash, but you have to remember to soak the chick peas for eight hours or so, or have a can or two of chick peas in the cupboard.

The dried, soaked chick peas taste better than the canned, but if you rinse the canned ones really well, they are good, too.

This recipe comes from World Vegetarian, by Madhur Jaffrey, published by Clarkson/Potter Publishers, New York, page 28.

Most of us in the United states think of hummus as a chickpea paste seasoned with lemon juice, olive oil and garlic. There are actually many versions of hummus, which means "chick peas". In this version, the chick peas are left whole.

Vegan Whole Grain or "Bead" Hummus
serves 4

8 garlic cloves, peeled

1 and 3/4 teaspoons salt

2 ½ cups cooked, drained chickpeas

6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 medium tomatoes, chopped ( I used a handful of tiny sugar plum grape tomatoes. They’re really sweet)

5 to 6 tablespoons of chopped parsley

1/4 teaspoon cayenne

5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Crush the garlic and salt together using a mortar. Place the salt and garlic mixture in a medium-sized bowl. Add the chick peas, lemon juice, tomatoes, parsley, and cayenne. Toss well to mix. Taste and adjust seasonings to taste. Drizzle with olive oil. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Some Interesting Things About Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans)

Chickpeas are native to the Mediterranean area and are widely grown in India, Burma and the Middle East.

Chick Peas (or Garbanzo beans) are cooked and eaten on salads, or in soups or other dishes.

Chana dal, available at Indian grocers, are small split chickpeas that look like yellow split peas.

Chana dal is used to make chickpea flour (also called besan or gram flower), which will be the subject of a separate blog in the near future (I have to first try to make Burmese-Style Tofu, which is made from chickpea flour).

Chickpeas are rich in protein, calcium, iron, zinc, and some B vitamins. Chickpeas are also a good source of manganese, vitamin E, and are high in complex carbohydrates. Chick peas are higher in protein and fat than other commonly eaten beans, but they are still considered a low-fat food. One hundred grams of mature boiled chickpeas contains 164 calories, 2.6 grams of fat (of which only .27 gram is saturated), 7,6 grams of dietary fiber, and 8.9 grams of protein.

Chickpeas are toxic at very high doses. At normal dietary doses, no problems have been shown to arise from eating chickpeas, and they are an extremely healthful food, even when eaten in quantity, as long as other proteins (especially grains) are also eaten.

1 cup of dried chickpeas will yield 3 cups of cooked, drained chickpeas. A 20-ounce can of chick peas yields about 2 1/4 cups of drained chick peas.

If you are using canned chickpeas and the recipe calls for the liquid from cooking chickpeas, do not use the liquid from the can. Use vegetable stock instead.

Dried chick peas are cooked and eaten on salads, or in soups or other dishes. The dried beans (peas) are also ground into a flour for making falafel or other recipes.

To cook 1 ½ cups chickpeas, spread the chickpeas in a single layer on a platter or tray. Pick out and discard any discolored and misshapen peas and impurities such as small stones and fibers. Transfer the chickpeas to a colander or sieve. Rinse well under cold running water.

Cover the cleaned chickpeas with 5 cups of cold water and soak for 3-8 hours at room temperature; drain well. Or, place in a saucepan with water to cover, bring to a boil, remove from the heat, and soak for 1 ½ hours.

Place the soaked, drained chickpeas in a medium pot, add 6 cups of water and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down, cover, and cook gently for 1 to 3 hours until the chickpeas are very tender.


World Vegetarian, by Madhur Jaffrey, published by Clarkson/Potter Publishers, New York, page 28.