Crispy Roasted Masala Chickpeas

26 Nov

We’re entering into that glorious time of the year when the celebrations are plentiful, the lights forever twinkly, and the snacks are everywhere, all of the time, no matter where you look. For a dedicated snacker (as I happen to be), this truly is the most wonderful time of the year. In her cookbook Super Natural Everyday Heidi Swanson notes that her day’s consumption of food goes something like “meal-snack-meal-snack-snack-meal,” a series of events that I can only describe as being somewhat blissful in its rhythm. Swanson, of course, makes the most of those meals and snacks, indulging in supremely healthful foods that provide the most punch as possible, both in terms of flavor and nutrition.

I wish I could say that I am always that dedicated to eating healthfully. Certainly a lot of people would look at my meals and snacks throughout the day and declare me to nothing short of a Pollyanna when it comes to food (I don’t drink sweet beverages at all, I eat very little meat, I don’t buy junk food), but one can certainly find a lot of room for improvement when it comes to my snack choices during the holidays. Whereas I ordinarily find much satisfaction in eating a few nuts or an apple for a standard snack, the holidays inevitably turn me in an entirely different direction, snack-wise. Things just seem to appear in our house, and then those things inevitably end up in my mouth. The chocolate covered nuts, the containers of homemade cookies—bless them all, but, my lord, I lose my mind when those things are sitting around and looking at me with their luscious, chocolaty, buttery eyes.

Perhaps this year I will be able to keep a stash of more sensible snacks around, so that I can maintain my normally reasonable and pleasurable way of eating. These crispy, spicy chickpeas will be a good start. They take absolutely no time to throw together, and they make a wonderful snack, garnish, or added protein, whether I am looking for something snacky or something to plump up a meal. My current favorite way to eat them (aside from just eating them as they are, which is simply wonderful) is to throw them on a pile of quinoa, chopped raw spinach, and avocado, then drizzle everything with a touch of balsamic vinegar and olive oil. The spices are just perfect and the tiny kick of heat makes for a nice surprise. All in all, these little chickpeas are a welcome addition to the day, no matter the season.

Last Year: Slow-Cooked Beans and Huevos Rancheros

Crispy Roasted Masala Chickpeas Recipe

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 ½ cups cooked, drained chickpeas

2 teaspoons garam masala (a commonly found Indian spice blend)

¼ teaspoon chili powder (or cayenne pepper, if you want things a little spicier)

salt and pepper to taste, if needed

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Heat a large oven-proof skillet over high heat. Add olive oil, then add drained chickpeas. Sprinkle over garam masala and cayenne pepper, and stir to combine. Sauté the chickpeas and spices, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes, then place the skillet in the heated oven. Roast the chickpeas in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, until they are crisp and golden. Taste for seasoning, and add a bit of salt and pepper if you think it is necessary (garam masala spice blends contain different levels of salt, so it is important to hold off on adding more salt until after the chickpeas have been roasted).

Eat the chickpeas as is, or add to salads or soups.

8 Responses to “Crispy Roasted Masala Chickpeas”

  1. Katie Whitehead November 26, 2012 at 10:59 am #

    These are delicious (I know, I’ve had them before) but now I know how easy they are I can make them and snack on them to my heart’s content. Nom nom nom

  2. Jean Schell November 26, 2012 at 12:09 pm #

    sounds like a great snack food…..

  3. emmycooks November 26, 2012 at 9:58 pm #

    Oh, I wish I had a batch of these right now. They’d make a perfect first snack before the buttery, chocolatey cookies. 🙂

    • savorysaltysweet November 27, 2012 at 11:25 am #

      I like the way you think.

      • emmycooks November 29, 2012 at 4:31 pm #

        I made these with curry powder–delish! Such a good idea to toast the spices in the pan first and put them in the oven hot. I’ll be doing that from now on!

  4. Celia November 29, 2012 at 11:15 am #

    I usually have a supply of garbonzo beans on hand, using them mainly for hummus. This recipe sounds like something my family and I would love, not only for snacks, but adding to rice dishes before eating. I am excited about trying this!

  5. Allison December 4, 2012 at 12:12 pm #

    These look wonderful! Garam masala and chickpeas go so well together… it’s like portable channa masala. And I am a sucker for any recipe that let’s me use my cast iron pan at its full potential– first on the stovetop, then in the oven. : )


  1. Curry Roasted Chickpeas « Emmy Cooks - December 2, 2012

    […] snack—whether for myself or to share—will be quick.Curry Roasted Chickpeas (inspired by Savory Salty Sweet): Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in an ovenproof pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 c. well-drained cooked […]

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