Google+  with milk and sugar blog: Mediterranean Garbanzo Bean Salad {w/ recipes}

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Mediterranean Garbanzo Bean Salad {w/ recipes}

hi friends. here's another "pinned it & did it" for you today.


There were a few reasons I decided to start this series. One being that Pinterest is a great way to find new projects, ideas, and recipes, but it lacks a call to action. I'm relatively new to the site, but I've already pinned 367 items (and counting). Let’s be frank. I have not tried 367 new things. Not even close. While some of the items have served as inspiration only {see my For The Home board. As much as I wish it, my house will not turn into these dream homes any time soon.}, many are things that can be done now. But like many other bloggers and pinners out there, it is much easier to say I’ll do something than actually do it. I’m trying to change this. And so this series is a way to hold me accountable to that.

Another reason to start this series: to act as an objective reviewer.  I hate to be a critic, because I know (from experience) how much hard work goes into creating/modifying recipes. But let’s face it: there are millions of recipes and projects floating around this place we call the internet and not all of them are good. Of course, they do work for some people, or else why would anyone bother putting it out there for others to use? But each of us has different tastes and preferences. It’s why I prefer recipe sites with comments. Whenever I find a new recipe, I always look to see what others said. A lot of times it is a simple adjustment that puts the finishing touch on a recipe to make it complete.

“not as much sugar”

“add more salt”

This feedback is important.

I found this recipe on Pinterest a few months ago. It is a Mediteranean chickpea salad with Kalamata olives, sun dried tomatoes, and cucumbers with a lemon/olive oil/cumin dressing. Everything sounded delicious. It’s rare for me to think a recipe like this is perfect as is. Not that I am a picky eater, but I enjoy making my own modifications to recipes. It is a way for me to be creative and experiment with new flavor combinations.

However, this time I followed the recipe to the T. Luckily they were all ingredients I had readily on hand - a lemon from my tree, fresh parsley, 2 cans of garbanzo beans, cumin, olives, sun dried tomatoes, cucumbers, olive oil, and garlic. Looking at the ingredients, it seemed like a lot of BIG flavors. It also called for a tablespoon (not teaspoon) of cumin. That's a lot of cumin. Regardless, I followed the recipe. 

The result was full of flavor, but maybe a bit too much. The ingredients were competing with each other. I left out the feta cheese, as it was optional, but still, this little salad packed a lot of punch.

The recipe suggested making it a day in advance, presumably to let the dressing marinate the vegetables. This is when it unfortunately went down hill. When I tried it the next day the flavors were much too much. 

I will try this recipe again, but there are a few alterations I will make. 

1. Skip the garlic. I don't say this often {read: ever} but in this case, it was an unnecessary flavor. 

2. Prepare and enjoy on the same day. These flavors are enough on their own, you don't need 24 hours for them to get stronger. 

3. Keep a light hand with the cumin. A tablespoon is fine, but a teaspoon or 2 would work just as well.

4. Don't use all of the dressing. Add it to the mixture slowly so that there is just enough. I used all of it and it ended up soupy. 

Hope you find my experience helpful. Here is the recipe with the changes. 

Mediterranean Garbanzo Bean Salad {serves 4}
adapted from With Style & Grace

1/4 c olive oil
1/4 c fresh lemon juice
1 t cumin (more to taste)

2 cans garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1 English cucumber, chopped
1/2 c fresh parsley, chopped
1/3 c drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced
1/4 c Kalamata olives
1/4 t dried crushed red pepper

1. Whisk together dressing ingredients. 
2. Combine all salad ingredients and slowly add the dressing to taste. 
3. Enjoy the same day.


  1. I love your attitude regarding Pinterest! I myself have over *cough* 2,000 pins :/ I love it though! It's reviving the creative side of me. This salad sounds delicious and I'll have to try it next time I buy sun dried tomatoes! What brand do you like, by the way? I buy them so seldom that I can't remember which kind I've got...and let's face it, not all sun dried tomatoes are created equal!

    1. So true about not all sundries tomatoes being equal. Unfortunately I just finished my jar and don't know the name. I get it at Fraziers and I think it has California in the name.

  2. This recipe is right up my alley! I love all the chickpea dishes . . . I hardly eat any meat and am always trying to find ways to add protein in every meal, and chickpeas do the trick :)

    Seize the Styles


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...