One of my favorites! All of you out there always asking how we turn a same old, same old salad into an exciting main course salad: You can glorify it even further by throwing in some leftover diced fish or chicken, or make it dairy, and throw in some crumbled feta. I love the chickpeas in this dish, but there’s no reason you can’t try another canned bean or quick-cooking grain, such as quinoa or bulghur, or even lightly toasted croutons.
- 8 cloves garlic
- 3 ribs celery, peeled
- 1 jalapeño, stem cut off
- 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley
- ½ preserved lemon, skin only, rinsed (page 33) (settle for zest of 2 lemons if you don’t have any on hand)
- ½ cup olive oil
- ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons cumin
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- Bottled hot sauce to taste
- 3 cups canned chickpeas (1 large can) or other beans, strained and rinsed (or 3 cups cooked quinoa or bulghur)
- 6 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced small
- 1 cup pitted Moroccan (oil-cured) olives
- ¼ cup capers
- 3 romaine hearts, sliced very thin
- Optional: 3 cups diced cooked salmon or crumbled Mock crab or feta cheese.
In a food processor, finely grind the garlic, celery, jalapeño, parsley, and preserved lemon. Add the oil, lemon, cumin, oregano, and hot sauce and pulse just 1 to 2 times until combined but still chunky.
Place all the salad ingredients in a platter. Toss with the ground mixture. Serve at room temperature.