Chickpea, Beetroot & Nut Salad

Retirement is a wonderful thing.  I haven’t really waxed lyrical about it on this blog but I do to everyone who is willing to listen.  It is the time to do all those things you didn’t have time to when you were working. I don’t want to bore you with the details of my previous existence, except to say, there wasn’t much spare time ….

This recipe caught my eye when it appeared in Cuisine magazine in 2008 and, now  I am retired, I have finally made it.  It lived up to all my expectations.

It is the recipe I will make at every opportunity this coming summer.  So friends, beware …

The recipe was featured in Cuisine, Issue 128, May 2008.  Jane Bland, a reader, wrote into the magazine, saying that she had this dish at Vilagrad Winery and loved it.  She requested Cuisine obtain the recipe.  Vilagrad’s chef, Kristian Nooyen, was happy to share it.

These quantities will serve 4 as a main.

For the salad mix:

  • ¾ cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight and then cooked until tender with ½ teaspoon turmeric.  I peel the chickpeas which, I know, many consider loopy.  I just think they taste so much better peeled.  If you decide to peel them (don’t tell your friends, otherwise, they will think you are loopy, too) keep the chickpeas in their cooking fluid whilst you are doing it.  The skins come off so much easier if the chickpeas are in fluid.  If this is all too hard:  two cups of canned chickpeas.
  • 1 medium beetroot, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
  • 4 spring onions, sliced
  • 2 sticks celery, diced
  • 1 thumb fresh ginger, very thinly sliced
  • ½ cup parsley, coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup coriander leaves

Toss all the ingredients together in a salad bowl.

For the nut mix:

  • 2 cups of a mixture of peanuts, cashews, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds.  I used 1½ cup nuts (¾ cup each of peanuts and cashews) and ½ cup of mixed sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds.
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cumin powder
  • ½ tsp coriander powder
  • ¼ tsp chilli powder
  • 25g chilled butter, grated or finely chopped
  1. Mix the sugar, salt, cumin, coriander and chilli powder in a small bowl then set aside.
  2. The recipe says to bake the nuts and seeds for 5 minutes at 180°C then sprinkle with the sugar and spice mixture.  If you are using roasted cashews and roasted peanuts, I would only roast the seeds then add the nuts and sprinkle with the sugar and spice mixture.
  3. Sprinkle the butter over the nuts and seeds and bake for 10 more minutes, stirring often. Set aside to cool.

For the dressing and to serve:

  • 3 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • ½ tsp brown sugar
  • salt and coarsely ground black pepper
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup coriander leaves
  1. Mix all the ingredients (except the coriander leaves) together.
  2. Toss the vinaigrette and ⅔ of the nut mixture with the salad.
  3. Garnish with the remaining nuts and coriander  leaves.

18 thoughts on “Chickpea, Beetroot & Nut Salad

  1. G & M served this salad for dinner a few weekends ago. Its a stand-out. One of the best I’ve tasted. I might even try to make it myself!

  2. Having retired 38 days after Glenda I can only support her waxing (lyrical). Being a beneficiary, I’m delighted it gives her more time for cooking! I do hope a Tahitian lime planting is on the list too.

    • Hiya Steve. You were so cruel to shatter my illusions about my ‘lime’ tree. I would love a real lime tree but I have so much citrus already, what would I do if it started bulk producing like my mandarin/lemon cross? By the way, I made a dish the other night and thought, ‘Steve and Al would like this.’

      • Sorry ’bout the lime tree. I’m hardly well up in these things.
        As for your new dish, I can’t wait try it, whatever it is. As I’ve said many times: I’ve never seen a calorie I didn’t like, but it’s always the best from G&M. But our barbie first.

  3. When I retired, I remember thinking (for many weeks) ‘This is about as close to dying and going to heaven as I’m ever going to get – Whoopee!’ However, at 10+ years now, my current thoughts are, ‘I wonder just how much longer I’m going to be able to keep doing my favorite things?’

    • Hi Doc, but at least you did them. I think it is so sad when people work for so long, they die within a few years of retiring or, worse still, die before they retire. Everyday I wake up and think ‘I am so lucky.’ But I also believe you make your own luck with decisions you make along the way… I planned this retirement.

  4. Now that is amazing…Patti just finished cooking some of the beetroot from the garden tonight and I’m making a beetroot salad for lunch tomorrow. Yours actually sounds heaps better than what I’ll be putting together in the morning. We do have a few beets left do I’m thinking this weekend Chickpea, Beetroot nut salad is on the cards. I’ll have to cook the beets so may get canned chickpeas. May save the peeling chickpeas until retirement also… Sue & Patti & Tillee

    • Hi Sue. The beetroot in this recipe is raw. Canned chickpeas would be fine, I am just a little anal about my chickpeas:)

      BTW: The garlic is looking fine. I don’t know if they are developing any bulbs. I don’t really care. I just love em. We will be back in Perth on the 19th.

      • Glad you told me it was raw but I also love it roasted. My garlic is the same and not sure what is happening. It doesn’t look that great compared to Johns in Augusta which is 6 foot tall, mind is lucky to be 6 inches.Will do some research!

        • Hi Sue, 6 feet, hooly dooly, are you sure??? I am happy mine is alive!! Mine is about 10 inches tall. The ones I planted in Perth are very sick looking.

      • OK maybe not that tall but alot bigger than mine. John is the person who gave me the garlic and if you remember the bulbs were huge. We’ll be down that way end of November so will have a chat to him and find out how he does it. Actually everything he grows is big. Speak soon. X

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