Smashed Chickpea Salad Sandwiches
Late the other night we arrived home from a week-long stay on the big island of Hawaii. Oliver promptly fell asleep in the car ride home (of course, after not sleeping through the duration of our 12 hour travel day), and Sam and I were starving so we stopped at the store for a frozen pizza, got O into bed and brought the luggage upstairs, and sat quietly at the dining room table listening to the spring rain sharing a few slices. It wasn’t great pizza, and it followed not great airport sandwiches, and all I could think about was how excited I was to get in the kitchen and make something great. Something with protein that felt nourishing and tasty — that all of us would eat and love. So instead of tackling the piles of vacation laundry today (so. much. ketchup), I headed to the store to pick up a few things to make a springtime chickpea salad — great as a sandwich filling or dip, and the perfect antidote to too much starchy food on the road.
While spending time in Hawaii, sandwiches were our lunchtime savior: we were on the East side for the first half of our trip, staying at a farmhouse situated near the Hawaiian Vanilla Company. There’s a great natural grocery store in nearby Honokaa where we often stocked up for dinner provisions, and a good spot for acai bowls in the morning, but lunch often found us out and about so we relied on peanut butter and jelly or turkey and cream cheese sandwiches. Both felt bland and dull but simple to execute, and on long sightseeing days, that’s really the best you can hope for.
Back home, it was time to add some color, crunch and a little acid to the mix. Our sandwich game needed some help. This morning Oliver went to his Aunt Christa’s for the day so we could catch up on work and settle back in, and I mashed up a can of chickpeas, cut up some herbs, grated carrots, chopped celery and pickles, and squeezed a fresh lemon into a bowl. Good things were happening.
Because I’m hanging onto vacation mode just a bit longer, I decided to put a few Tim’s potato chips in my sandwich for extra crunch. Sam thought I’d lost my mind until he tried it: elevated sandwich game accomplished. Now, onto the next great thing. See you back here soon.
Smashed Chickpea Salad Sandwiches
- Yield: 2 sandwiches
- Prep time:15mins
- Total time:15mins
While this isn’t the sandwich I’d choose to pack for a long trip (it’s a little messy — in the best possible way), it’s a great vegetarian go-to and is sure to elevate your sandwich game at home. I love serving these with a few potato chips inside the sandwich for extra crunch, but if you’re not much of a sandwich person, you could always forego the bread and fold in some leftover cooked grains or even pasta to make this a filling salad on its own.
In a medium bowl use a fork or potato masher to mash the chickpeas. You’re looking for a chunky texture – it’s ok if you have some whole chickpeas remaining but you want to avoid an extremely overmashed texture (like hummus).
Add the celery, pickles, carrot, shallot, mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice, chives, parsley, dill, salt, turmeric and pepper. Mix well. Taste and adjust the seasoning as desired, adding additional salt or pepper as needed.
Lay two slices of bread on a flat surface and arrange a flat layer of spinach on one slice. Spread chickpea mixture on top of spinach. Pile a handful of potato chips on top, and place remaining slice of bread on top of chips. Press firmly to marry all the sandwich fillings.
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People describe raising young kids as a particular season in life. I hadn't heard this until we had a baby, but it brought me a lot of comfort when I'd start to let my mind wander, late at night between feedings, to fears that we'd never travel internationally again or have a sit-down meal in our dining room. Would I ever eat a cardamom bun in Sweden? Soak in Iceland? I loved the heck out of our tiny Oliver, but man what had we done?! Friends would swoop in and reassure us that this was just a season, a blip in the big picture of it all. They promised we'd likely not even remember walking around the house in circles singing made-up songs while eating freezer burritos at odd hours of the day (or night). And it's true.
Oliver is turning two next month, and those all-encompassing baby days feel like a different time, a different Us. In many ways, dare I say it, Toddlerhood actually feels a bit harder. Lately Oliver has become extremely opinionated about what he will and will not wear -- and he enforces these opinions with fervor. Don't get near the kid with a button-down shirt. This week at least. He's obsessed with his rain boots and if it were up to him, he'd keep them on at all times, especially during meals. He insists on ketchup with everything (I created a damn monster), has learned the word "trash" and insists on throwing found items away on his own that really, truly are not trash. I came to pick him up from daycare the other day and he was randomly wearing a bike helmet -- his teacher mentioned he'd had it on most of the day and really, really didn't want to take it off. The kid has FEELINGS. I love that about him, and wouldn't want it any other way. But, man it's also exhausting.
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To Talk Porridge
Porridge is not the sexiest of breakfasts, it's true. It doesn't have a stylish name like strata or shakshuka, and it doesn't have perfectly domed tops like your favorite fruity muffin. It doesn't crumble into delightful bits like a good scone nor does it fall into buttery shards like a well-made croissant. But when you wake up and it's 17 degrees outside (as it has been, give or take a few, for the last week), there's nothing that satisfies like a bowl of porridge or oatmeal. It's warm and hearty and can be made sweet or savory with any number of toppings. The problem? Over the years, it's gotten a bad rap as gluey or gummy or just downright boring or dutiful -- and it's because not everyone knows the secrets to making a great pot of warm morning cereal. So let's talk porridge (also: my cookbook comes out this month! So let's take a peek inside, shall we?)
I LOVE potato chips in peanut butter and apricot jam sandwiches. Was so happy to see this post so I can expand my chip-which repertoire! Hope you are well. Lori
This looks delicious and perfect for work lunches! Does it keep well in the fridge?
Hi, Abby! Totally. Keeps great for a good 4 days. Sandwiches themselves can get a little messy BUT it's awesome as is as a salad, and would make a great work lunch. Enjoy!
Looks awesome! Not into mayo though, what would sub well and still last in the fridge 4 days?
Plain yogurt's a good call.
Plain yogurt will be just fine! Enjoy, Beth!
I love chickpeas! This looks mouthwatering. Thanks.
Lunch is my least favorite meal of the day but this recipe is exactly what I need to bring some zing to my lunch game. Thank you!
Love chickpeas - they are my "go-too" snack for sure. Such a creative way to use them! I guess you could make these as wraps too? Perfect for a picnic - thanks Megan. Going to try these this weekend.
Thanks, Jennifer! I hope you like them :)
This looks wonderful-I love chickpea salads, whether its in between two slices of bread, stuffed in a pita or piled in a bowl. I smiled when I saw you were on the BI, its our favorite island and we will be back there ourselves in August. Honokaa is a wonderful little town and no visit to the BI is complete w/out a stop at the Vanilla farm. Did you get a chance to go to Merrimans? Such a wonderful restaurant that adheres to its Hawaiian roots. Thank you again for the wonderful recipe and post.
I love sandwich with Peanut butter and mayo. But this smashed chickpea salad sandwich I must try! I believe it tastes as amazing as it looks.
I just made this to have for sandwiches this week. It’s awesome! Exactly the type of thing I was looking for! Thank you!
Yay, so glad, Matt!
I made this today. ( no potato chips) It was absolutely delicious. This recipe is does keeper.
So glad you enjoyed the recipe, Dawn! I love this one, too!
Try a vinaigrette dressing. Can use your own or Italian salad dressing. I don't like Mayo at all and use this for tuna, Chicken Salad, and now likely this! It keeps well in the fridge for several days. I often add a dash of red wine vinegar if the dressing is too thick.
Sounds delicious, Jane! Thank you!
This chick-pea salad is so absolutely delicious. Will become one of my favorites. Thank you so much!!
This is REALLY nice! Made it for lunch tomorrow and will certainly be making it again.
So glad to hear it, Zoe!
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