Hi everyone! Thanks for continuing to read this blog despite the lack of posting over the past few months. I’ve been fairly busy, so I’ve (sadly) stopped feeling guilty about abandoning my blog. But, since dinner cooked so quickly tonight, I had a little extra time to post what I made.
This dish is really two side dishes combined into one meal: bulgur pilaf and chickpeas with spinach. The chickpeas are inspired by my (favorite) mom, Debbie. She would make chickpeas with onions and tomatoes, but didn’t add spinach. I don’t remember if she used tomato sauce, paste, or diced tomatoes, but it did taste pretty similar to this dish! She also made a similar dish with spinach instead of chickpeas. I essentially combined the two dishes together, and I may never look back.
As I was cooking, I thought, “Haven’t I posted this before?”. After a few minutes of pondering, I realized that I posted a chickpea and potato curry with basmati rice (also quick and delicious) a while back, but the flavors here are completely different. I’m trying not to rip myself off, but I eat so many chickpeas that it’s hard not to have some overlap!
I personally would call this a vegetarian meal, but I do realize that there is chicken broth in the pilaf. If you prefer a completely vegetarian meal, swap out the chicken broth for vegetable broth or water, and it will taste just as great.
Stewed Chickpeas with Bulgur Pilaf
Prep time: 7 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
About 4 tablespoons olive oil (divided)
Two small onions, diced (divided)
1 cup coarse bulgur
2 cups chicken broth/vegetable broth (1 14.5 oz can)
2 cups canned chickpeas (one 13.5 oz can), drained and rinsed
1 13.5 oz can tomato sauce
1 cup frozen spinach
Salt and pepper to taste
Add about two tablespoons olive oil to a medium sized saucepan over medium low heat. Add about 1/3 of the onion, and sauté for 3-4 minutes. Add the bulgur and stir, and then add the chicken broth and stir once more. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt. When the chicken broth starts to boil, cover, and turn the heat to low. Cook for 25 minutes, and do not open the lid until the time is up!
While you’re waiting for the pilaf to come to a boil, add the remaining olive oil to another medium sized pot over medium heat. Add the remaining onion, stir, and sauté for 3-4 minutes. Add the chickpeas, tomato sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt, dash of black pepper, and stir. Cover partially with a lid, and reduce heat to medium-low.
When there is about 5 minutes of cook time left on the pilaf, add the frozen spinach to the chickpea mixture, stir, and replace the lid. The two dishes should finish cooking at the same time. Add salt and pepper to each to taste.
To serve as a meal, place a scoop of the bulgur pilaf in a bowl, and top with the chickpeas. You can also serve each of these as a side dish.
Change it up:
- Use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth
- Use more chickpeas or spinach
- Add garlic. Why didn’t I think of that before?