Crunchy Broccoli and Chickpea Salad….

I love that side salad, I make a meal out of it….the good part about that is I had more time to test and tweak it, and man it’s good. While most broccoli salads are drenched in mayonnaise, this is a dairy-free version and I added chickpeas for protein, toasted pine nuts for crunch and sweet little currents to round out the flavors. The honey mustard dressing is simple and subtle and would be great on other green salads or veggies this time of year, too.

It’s one of those recipes that’s even better the second day, and once he picked out the parsley (heaven forbid anything resembling lettuce land on his plate), my wife and daughter enjoyed it, too. That’s a real ringing endorsement these days, let me tell you. I hope you all have a restful long weekend and are easy on yourselves, leaving all those “should” behind….

Crunchy Broccoli and Chickpea Salad :

  • YIELD: 6 SERVINGS
  • PREP TIME: 25 MINS
  • COOK TIME: 5 MINS
  • TOTAL TIME: 30 MINS

This crunchy broccoli salad is packed with flavor but without the heavy mayonnaise-laden dressings that typically accompany similar recipes. The trick is not to overcook the broccoli: you’re really just giving it a quick blanch to soften it slightly – it should still have some snap! If you’d rather not use pine nuts, walnuts, almonds or sunflower seeds would all be great here as well.

INGREDIENTS

For the Salad:

1/2 cup (60g) pinenuts

1 pound broccoli florets, roughly chopped (from about 1 1/2 pounds broccoli)

1 14-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1/4 cup (30g) chopped red onion (about 1/4 onion)

1/3 cup (45g) currents (or regular raisins)

1 cup (45g) chopped Italian parsley

For the Dressing :

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon brown spicy mustard

1 clove garlic, minced

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

Toast the pine nuts: In a small dry skillet over medium heat, toast pine nuts until fragrant and just golden, about 4 minutes. Stir occasionally to avoid burning.

Quickly blanch broccoli: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook broccoli until slightly tender but still quite firm, 3-4 minutes. Toss broccoli into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Drain well.

Mix up the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, oil, honey, mustard, garlic, salt and pepper. Set aside.

Assemble the salad: In a large salad bowl, toss together the drained broccoli, chickpeas, onion, currents, parsley, and toasted pine nuts. Fold in the dressing and stir well to coat. Taste and adjust the seasoning as desired.

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