Cashew Chicken with Roasted Spiced Chickpeas

Gathering the Garbanzos

Last week, I noticed a food-blogging phenomenon that I don’t have a name for. It’s probably been described in Malcolm Gladwell’s book about social trends, The Tipping Point, but I can’t recall what term he has for it. It’s that thing where one day, it seems you see the same recipe, idea, color or low-rise jean style right in front of you, everywhere you look.

Since I can’t enlighten you further, I’ll name this particular incidence the Convergence of Chickpeas:

1. Alanna at A Veggie Venture writes about an easy garbanzo supper.
2. Lydia at The Perfect Pantry displays an essential pantry staple.
3. Lisa at Champaign Taste made a beautiful Italian-style soup.
4. Molly at Orangette describes a loving lunch gift.

Because chickpeas are one of my personal “soul” foods, I have a special place for them in my foodie heart.

I love that you can buy them in a can, drain and eat as they are or embellish them in any number of tasty exotic ways. Also, that they can inspire a whole meal, and the simpler the better. I love boldly spiced dishes like this quick cashew chicken.
It’s another convergence of sorts - Bangkok meets Bangalore.

Cashew Chicken with Roasted Spiced Chickpeas
for 4 servings

1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into 1-inch pieces
2 shallots, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce
2 cups baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup roasted, salted cashews, chopped
3 cups cooked rice

Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Toss the chickpeas on a baking sheet with 1 tablespoon of the oil, salt, curry powder, cumin and cayenne. Roast for 25 minutes.

Heat a non-stick wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons oil until smoking. Toss in the chicken and cook, stirring, until surfaces are seared, but interior is still pink. Stir in the shallots and cook until softened, 1-2 minutes.

Add the sugar, soy sauce, and fish sauce to the chicken and stir. Cook a few more minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.

Stir in the chickpeas, spinach and cashews. Serve in bowls with hot cooked rice.

Copyright (c) 2007 FamilyStyle Food


stephen said...

Hi Karen...after reading this I think I'll roast me some garbanzos tonight...sounds great...

Alanna sent me a link to your site, and my position is that anyone who lists both The Big Lebowski and Harriet the Spy in her profile is all right with me!

Lydia said...

Karen, this is a great chickpea dish to add to the "convergence"!

Stefanie said...

Hi Karen, found your blog through Lydia's Perfect Pantry. Excellent photos and great cooking! I'm totally linking to you.

Joe said...

We have really begun to love chickpeas - this looks like an excellent way to incorporate them into a main dish!

Kalyn said...

Just letting you know I'm featuring this recipe in my South Beach Recipes of the Week, with your photo (and a credit for you, of course) and a link to the recipe. Great recipe! Thanks!

Freya said...

Hi karen! This reminds me to make something with chick peas now!
First time on your blog and it's really great reading!

Stefania said...

Had to comment when I saw your blog over at Kalyn's site, esp since the name of our blogs are so similar!

Good to see a another parent where eating well is a way of life. I'll be back.

Family Food

Karen said...

Hey, thanks all! I'm happy to have some new visitors, and new blogs to look at.

I do hope you make this recipe - and don't be shy about giving me feedback. I'm always tweaking my recipes.

Now to move on to all of the other chickpea ideas!

Brooke said...

We made this for dinner last night, Karen. So delicious! I adore chickpeas but had never roasted them before. Yum!