Full Belly Sisters: Chopped Salad w. Chickpeas & Feta

Monday, June 3, 2013

Chopped Salad w. Chickpeas & Feta

I've been nominated in the Top 25 Foodie Moms contest over at Circle or Moms. Voting ends tomorrow, June 4, at 4pm PST. I'd really love your support! Just look for Full Belly Sisters on the list and click "vote" next to our name; no registration required. Thanks in advance for your support, I truly appreciate it.

This past week has been pretty hectic and a bit of an emotional roller coaster. My mom had thoracic surgery; looks like everything is going to be fine, but it was pretty scary for a while there. And my son is wrapping up his last couple of weeks at pre-school, with events at his current school plus others at the local elementary school for incoming kindergarteners. There's just a lot going on. 

It's times like these that I just need easy, simple dishes like this chopped salad. I always have some cans of different types of beans on hand; they're an easy way to add flavor, fiber, and protein to most any dish. The veggie chopping takes a bit of time, depending on your knife skills; I am very sloooow, but I find chopping kind of meditative and don't really mind setting aside a handful of minutes to do it for this salad. 

This colorful salad isn't about measuring ingredients; it's a bit different every time I make it. If you love peppers, throw them in. Want to add grilled, chopped chicken instead of the garbanzo beans? Go for it. Have a favorite salad dressing you'd like to use? No problem, use it! You may notice it's very similar to my Tomato, Cucumber and Onion Salad. That's because I love different variations on this theme—no need to reinvent the wheel, amiright?

serves 4-6 as a side dish
  • about 2 cups of grape tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 English cucumber, diced
  • 1 can chickpeas (preferably in a BPA-free can), drained and rinsed
  • 2-3 scallions, chopped
  • 3-4 ounces of crumbled feta 
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • red wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper, to taste

In a large bowl, place all the tomatoes, cucumbers, chickpeas, and scallions. Drizzle on some olive oil and pour on a bunch of red wine vinegar; I don't measure mine and I like a tangy dressing, so I do about a 1:2 ratio of EVOO:vinegar. Season with salt and freshly-ground pepper, to taste. Fold in the feta (I used one with herbs and sundried tomatoes, but plain works great, too).

This makes a great summer side dish. Or you can have a larger portion as a meal. I put a bunch in a mason jar and took it to my son's pre-school's End-of-Year picnic for a perfectly portable lunch: simple, tasty, light and satisfying.

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