Leave it to a fresh green salad, a good spring-cleaning, and an intense garage purge to shake off the winter blues. It feels like the past few weeks have been a much needed restart after the snowiest February of my lifetime. I started making this salad when I discovered Sara Forte’s version – and over time I’ve adapted it a bit for my preferences. I adjusted the crispy chickpea recipe, substituted apples instead of cucumbers for a nice crunch (yes, I’m in my early 30s and still don’t like fresh cucumbers), and took her advice to add sheep feta (a favorite). If you’re in the mood for an extra protein boost, I also enjoy adding cooked turkey. I promise this salad sticks true to my conviction that the best salads don’t skimp on toppings, have a variety of textures, and a flavorful homemade dressing. Happy spring to you!
CRISPY CHICKPEA, AVOCADO, AND FETA GREEN SALAD WITH ROASTED JALAPEÑO DRESSING
lightly adapted from: Sprouted Kitchen
makes 3-4 large salads, or 6 side salads
3 ounces baby kale
2 cups (6 oz) shredded brussels sprouts
3 green onions, thinly sliced (both white and green parts)
5 ounces sheep feta, crumbled
1/3 cup pumpkin seeds, toasted and salted
1 avocado, diced
1 medium apple, sliced into matchsticks or small diced (I like to use either honeycrisp or pink lady apples)
crispy chickpeas (recipe follows)
roasted jalapeño dressing (recipe follows)
1 can (15oz) garbanzo beans, rinsed and dried with a towel
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
a few grinds of black pepper
roasted jalapeño dressing :
2 medium jalapeños*, roasted (directions below)
1/4 cup chopped shallot
2 large cloves of garlic, chopped
3/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
1.5 teaspoons honey
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
a few grinds of black pepper
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, toss together all of the crispy chickpea ingredients. Spread the chickpeas on the parchment paper and bake for roughly 35 minutes, tossing halfway, until browned and crispy. When the chickpeas are baked, set aside and let cool.
If you are making the roasted jalapeño dressing, you can roast the jalapeños in the oven with the chickpeas. Put the jalapeños on a small baking sheet with parchment paper, drizzle with olive oil, and bake for 25 min at 400 degrees F.
When the jalapeños are roasted, de-stem and remove the seeds. Blend all dressing ingredients together in a food processor.
To assemble: Toss together all salad ingredients and add desired amount of dressing. If you want, save a handful of the toppings to garnish on top for serving. If you anticipate leftovers, I recommend dressing each individual portion.
This is best eaten the first day, though leftovers will keep for a day or so if undressed.
*If you don’t want heat/spice in the dressing, only use ONE de-seeded jalapeño. TWO de-seeded jalapeños will yield a strong mild or medium spice level. Leave some seeds in if you like it hot/extra spicy.