The Simple and Satisfying Chickpea Dish

Whether you want to impress party guests with a delicious appetizer or just want to cook some up as a simple dinner side dish, these spiced chickpeas are flavorful and surprisingly easy to make.

Renowned vegan chef and restauranteur, Tal Ronnen shares his recipe for marinara-coated spiced chickpeas. He begins by adding grapeseed oil to a pan, then adding diced garlic, chopped shallot and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Then he adds chickpeas and sautés for a few moments for added crispiness. Next add sherry (careful not to burn yourself!) and lemon juice and marinara sauce. As a finishing touch, top off with chopped parsley. See the full recipe below!

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Spiced Chickpeas

Serves 4

  • 2 cups dried chickpeas (garbanzo beans), soaked overnight in cold water, or two
  • 15-ounce cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1/2 shallot, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • 1 cup Scoty’s Marinara Sauce (recipe follows) or store-bought sauce
  • Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, for garnish


    If using dried chickpeas, drain and rinse them and transfer to a large pot. Add water to cover by 1 inch and bring to a boil, then simmer over medium-low heat until the chickpeas are tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Drain and rinse. (The chickpeas can be cooked a day ahead and refrigerated, covered.)

    Preheat the oven to 425°F.

    Combine the chickpeas, cumin, red pepper flakes, cayenne, salt and black pepper in a mixing bowl, drizzle with ¼ cup of the oil, and toss to coat. Spread the chickpeas out on a baking sheet in a single layer and roast, shaking the pan from time to time, for 20 to 25 minutes, until the chickpeas are firm and dry. Set aside to cool. (The roasted chickpeas can be prepared a couple of hours in advance, covered, and held at room temperature.)

    Put a large sauté pan over medium heat and add the remaining 2 tablespoons oil. When the oil is hot, stir in the shallot and garlic and cook, stirring, until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the chickpeas, tossing to heat through. Stir in the lemon juice, sherry, and marinara sauce and cook, stirring, until the chickpeas are well coated and the sauce is hot, about 2 minutes.

    Mound the chickpeas in a shallow serving bowl, top with chopped parsley, and serve warm.

    Scoty’s Marinara Sauce

    Makes 6 cups

  • Two 28-ounce cans whole tomatoes, preferably San Marzano
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 carrot, finely grated (about ½ cup)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Pinch of baking soda
  • 4 fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon Earth Balance butter stick


    Working in batches, put the tomatoes, along with their juice, in a food processor or blender and puree just until semi-smooth; you want a little bit of chunky texture.

    Put a medium pot over medium heat and add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onion, garlic, and carrot, season with salt, black pepper and the red pepper flakes, and sauté until the vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes.

    Add the pureed tomatoes, stirring to combine, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until the sauce thickens, about 45 minutes. Season the sauce with more salt and black pepper, to taste. Remove from the heat, stir in the baking soda, making sure it dissolves, and add the basil and butter substitute.

    Once cooled, the sauce can be refrigerated covered for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.
  • Published 07/22/2016
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