Chickpeas are tasty and nutritious and are the basis for many simple and inexpensive recipes. Here’s a brief history and overview of this delicious bean.
Chickpeas are Delicious Healthy and Inexpensive!
Throughout the years, vegans have been continually busting the myth that we only eat lettuce and potatoes. Sadly, it was assumed that we are deprived of the foods that have been the desired mainstay of human culinary delight. Oh, the irony. We simply leave out all animal products and can re-create any of the foods loved by so many, including us before we became vegans! We love vegan BBQ, creamy salad dressings, pizza, burgers, omelets, casseroles, and desserts. We don’t sacrifice, because we’re foodies, too! We become so creative with our food that cooking becomes more of a joy than before we made this extraordinary transition.
Chickpeas are Deliciously Vegan!
Chickpeas are Also Known as Garbanzo Beans
One of my personal favorite foods to create with is the garbanzo bean, a.k.a. the chickpea. These tasty members of the pea family are also called ceci in Italy, kichererbse in Germany, and revithia in Greece. Whatever country they are served in, they are always versatile and can be used in an infinite assortment of culinary dishes, casual or fancy. These little legumes have a nutty taste, a creamy texture and they complement a variety of other flavors.
Chickpeas have a Long History
The chickpea is the legume with the longest history, it’s 7500 years old! Originating in the Middle East, it is grown in the Mediterranean, Western Asia and the Indian subcontinent, and Australia. Most of the world’s chickpeas are grown in India. Chickpeas are rich in carbohydrates, proteins, phosphorus, calcium, and iron. A nutritional powerhouse! It is also a good source of zinc, manganese, and folate. With 12.5 grams of fiber per cup, the garbanzo is an excellent digestive tract supporter. Eating chickpeas can help with any weight loss program, as they are low in fat and help us to feel full and satisfied.
A Bean Rich in Tryptophan
If it’s a good night’s sleep you’re after, chickpeas may be the answer. They are rich in tryptophan, which is an amino acid and a precursor to serotonin that can increase sleepiness and can even help us fall asleep faster (yes please.) Insomnia sufferers typically see improvements in the time they are able to stay asleep when they increase their tryptophan intake. Chickpeas are a natural and cruelty-free way to drift into pleasant dreams.
You can grind up dried chickpeas into a fine flour which can create crepes, crispy coatings, and even chickpea fries. Coat your eggplant with chickpea flour before lightly sautéing and make a luscious eggplant parmesan using cashew cream and vegan mozzarella.
A Vegan Lifestyle is Good for So Many Reasons
Each time I attempt one of these recipes I am reminded that this lifestyle has profound effects on my health and the environment. Every time I practice my vegan culinary skills I feel elated to be living this life according to my values of compassion and mercy. We live in a culture of disconnect and distraction, but I am fully present in my deep concern for the sanctity of life, each and every time I prepare and sit down for a meal. It’s unnecessary for us to turn away from the reality of what is happening to billions of innocent animals every second of every day. We can align our values of compassion for animals with our choices — all while eating delicious meals that are healthier for our bodies, our souls, and our home, planet earth.
So all we are saying is give chickpeas a chance.
Sundara Vegan encompasses an array of offerings including vegan coaching, education, meditations, writing, and creative endeavors geared towards vegan life. Sundara Vegan was founded by Sande Nosonowitz. Sande is a master-certified vegan coach, writer, and educator. For three years, she penned a column for Living & Being Magazine (part of the USA TODAY Network) called ‘Living & Being Vegan,’ and wrote & published her latest book, “OBLIVIOUS; A Vegan Memoir.” This comes after her first compilation book, “Living & Being Vegan; How Veganism Heals Your Body, Mind, and Spirit.”
Sande’s multi-media presentations, “How Veganism Heals” and “Plant-Based at Any Age,” have been enjoyed by groups at venues such as The Mid-Hudson Regional Hospital, Dutchess Community College, The Omega Institute Staff Program, The DrawDown National Environmental Program, The Fountains at Millbrook Community Education Series and The Vassar College Lifelong Learning Institute. She’s a proud co-founder of the Hudson Valley Vegfest held annually in New York State. Sande is also a certified yoga & meditation instructor, teaching ahimsa-based practices.