My Chef's Hat - Chickpea Salad

Back in February I posted a recipe for chicken chickpea chopped salad, and my friend Slim asked "what the heck is a chickpea"??  Quite honestly I'm shocked he didn't know...I've been eating them most of my life.  In Trinidad they eat them a lot, and if you've ever eaten hummus, well then you've eaten chickpeas.  They're one of my favorite beans.  When I was a kid my mom always bought them dry, and then soaked and cooked them in the pressure cooker--she would only do the canned in a pinch.  But to me that was way too much work so I just bought them canned.  However, those have so much more sodium, plus that icky liquid stuff, and it's way more expensive.  So a few years ago I went to the dry version as well. 

I'm trying to eat more beans on a regular basis. They're really good for you, packed with fiber, and are very filling.  So about a month ago when I saw the recipe for chickpea salad I couldn't resist.  It's full of everything that I like.

Here's the recipe version:

And here's my version:

I grilled a boneless/skinless chicken thigh and added it to mine, to make it even heartier. I tried it with lettuce the first time I made it, but honestly I don't think it needs it. The chicken adds enough heartiness, and I started adding red pepper as well. I also started adding balsamic vinegar. My friend Dianne bought me this amazing super thick and rich vinegar, so just a tiny bit goes a really long way.

This is absolutely one of my favorite dishes for lunch.  At first I thought the honey was kind of an odd ingredient, but it really doesn't make the dish sweet at all.  I'm not sure exactly what it does, but I'm not about to try it without the honey.  I don't have Meyer lemons, and I don't even know where I would find them.  I also didn't have any lemons handy that day so I just used lime juice, and am now hooked on it.  The dish has tons of flavor, it's very filling, and the whole thing only has about 420 calories.  And it's super fast to put together.  I'll usually cook the beans in the pressure cooker the night before, so all I have to do is throw them in the dish.  It's also gluten free, but I'm not worried about that part.

Recipe found on Gluten Free Spinner