Chickpea Salad

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Cheap and easy: that’s my new motto (and reputation), especially at lunch. Yes–times are hard, even for your friendly Amateur Gourmet. “But you just went to Momofuku Ko,” you might say and I’d say back, “Yes, and wiped myself clean!” Especially now that I’ve done my taxes: to quote my rabbi, “Oy!”

No more lunches out, then: from now on it’s sandwiches and leftovers. And the occasional chickpea salad like the one you see above.

“But Adam,” you say kindly. “That chickpea salad looks kind of boring.”

“Boring!” I say and pretend to smack you. “It’s anything but. I packed it with flavor.”

“How’d you do that?”

Here’s what I did, written in the 2nd person so it’s more instructional.

Cheap & Easy Chickpea Salad

Open a can of chickpeas.

Drain them.

Put them in a bowl and add, to taste:

2 finely chopped cloves of garlic

Juice from one lemon (maybe even the zest, if you like it zesty)

A splash or two of olive oil

Salt

Pepper

and, here’s the kicker, some Tabasco sauce.

What is this really? Why it’s the Barefoot Contessa’s hummus, deconstructed. It’s not blended but with all those flavors, it makes a mighty, mighty impact.

Stir it all around and eat. Cheap and easy!

Now if you’d like to fancy it up a bit you could add:

– some chopped red onion

– some chopped parsley

I served it on leftover Arborio rice salad. A satisfying lunch, and maybe even a healthy one too. And cheap–very cheap.

What are your favorite cheap and easy lunches? I have a feeling many out there (including me) would love to know.

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