This meal was a big hit with me and my mom. The spices were perfect to us — just the right amount of heat, a freshness from the cilantro, and a beef dish that wasn’t very heavy. In fact, I think it was a little too easy to eat a lot of it. Next time I will either halve the beef per the original recipe, or double the chickpeas so that I get more servings.
I walked in the door at 4:30 this afternoon, and had dinner on the table at 5. I’ve mentioned before that I feel like I’m a pretty slow cook (it takes me forever to chop and slice and dice). There is minimal prep here, so it’s truly a 30-minute meal. I intended to serve a light cucumber salad (slice cucumbers, onions, and a little olive oil and vinegar) but I forgot to buy the cukes. Oops. Instead we used up some Dr. Praeger’s spinach pancakes and the leftover butternut squash and apples from last night. I also served it with toasted pita bread, though I don’t think it needs a starch.
G. actually ate a piece of pita! It may sound crazy to be excited about him trying something as vanilla as pita bread, but I am thrilled when anything unfamiliar is embraced. As usual, A. was vocal in his disapproval of the meal, and ate an apple instead. At least he’s been getting his fruit servings lately.
Spicy Sauteed Chickpeas, Beef & Cilantro
Adapted from Spicy Sauteed Chickpeas with Beef and Cilantro
1 lb. lean ground beef
1 tsp. Spike Seasoning (I use the salt-free version)
2 15-oz. cans chickpeas, drained with 1 c. liquid reserved
1 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 tsp. garlic, minced
black pepper (about 10 grinds)
1 c. vegetable stock
1 c. cilantro, finely chopped
In a large non-stick skillet, crumble ground beef and brown on high heat. Use a spatula to break up the beef as it cooks — you do not want any large pieces. Sprinkle with Spike Seasoning and cook for about 5 minutes.
Add drained chickpeas and continue cooking on high heat until chickpeas and beef are browned — about another 5 minutes. Add cumin, cayenne pepper, garlic, and pepper and stir to combine. Then add the 1 c. reserved liquid from the chickpeas, plus the vegetable stock.
Cook uncovered on medium heat for about 15 minutes, until the pan is almost dry. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro. Adjust seasonings and serve.