Cilantro Spiced Chick Peas

Yesterday I posted a hot, heavy side dish, Parmesan Yamcakes. While delicious, and of course nutricious, not really super summery. So as we get ready to dive into August, and temperatures are still sky high, sometimes all I want is a fresh salad for dinner with some delicious toppings. A rotisserie chicken, for example, is a staple at my house for busy weeknights. Throw it on a salad, eat it with your hands off the bone, or make a chicken salad.

Another staple in my house is an assortment of salad fixings. English cucumber (always), green onion, purple or green cabbage, marinaded mushrooms, olives and artichokes, and of course cans of beans. I got fancy this week and made some spruced up chick peas for my salad. They're so good on a summer salad.

Cilantro Spiced Chick Peas
makes 1 bowl for snacking or topping

1 can chick peas (drained)
4 cloves garlic (thinly sliced)
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp smoky paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 cup cilantro (rough chop)
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

In a medium to large saute pan, add olive oil and heat over medium heat. Add the rest of the ingredients, but keep the cilantro until the end-- don't add the cilantro yet. 

Cook the chick peas, tossing and moving around every so often for 15 minutes. Some of the chick peas will crack open, and that's ok. At the very end, taste and add salt if necessary. Turn off heat and add fresh cilantro.

Serve these little babies as a snack, or my favorite, on top of a fresh green salad. If you make a yummy vinaigrette, the spices from the chick peas mix with the vinaigrette and create great, bright flavors on a summer salad. 

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