Friday, September 23, 2011

Gluten Free Friday ~ Roasted Snacks (Chickpeas! Almonds!)

I'm not even sure where I first heard mention of "roasted chick peas", but the thought has not left my mind since.  Hummus has been a beloved staple in my diet for years now.  Chickpeas found on a salad bar always make it to the top of my heaping greens.  So, this next level of chickpea infatuation seemed obvious.  I've seen recipes for sweet ones and savory ones, but after trying a few at home, I think the savory ones are best.  Even my kiddos liked the savory ones best, especially fresh out of the oven.

Roasted Chickpeas

1 large can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (loose outer layer/skins removed if you like)
(Or use a dried and then cooked-at-home bag of chickpeas ~ I did!)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp garlic powder and other desired herbs, or a garlic and herb sprinkle (I used a McCormick version)
salt and pepper to taste

Whisk together oil, vinegar, garlic and herbs, salt and pepper.  Place drained/rinsed chickpeas in a bowl and pour liquid mixture over, tossing to coat.  Let sit 5-10 minutes and toss to coat again.  Pour chickpeas out onto a baking sheet and bake for 30-40 minutes at 375 degrees, turning occasionally so they do not burn on one side.  Serve fresh out of the oven or store in an airtight container for future snacking.

Another roasted snack I made this week involved some almonds that I have had stored in my frig for probably way too long.  I figured that soaking and then roasting them might get them eaten much faster than I could make almond milk and raw cheesecakes out of them.  These are definitely sweet and reminiscent of those roasted nuts whose smell compels you to turn in their direction and promptly pay $4 for a tiny bag of them on the streets of New York City. I can never resist a buying a bag of nuts while visiting Manhattan, and I've noticed vendors popping up on the streets of Boston as well.  This homemade version turned out to be just as addictive, and then I found this recipe that sounds even better and doesn't use white sugar.  I can not wait to try the chocolate version!

Cinnamon Roasted Almonds

4 cups raw almonds
1 egg white
1 tsp water
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

In a small bowl combine cinnamon and sugar.  In a separate bowl, beat egg white until foamy.  Add water and continue beating for one minute.  Pour almonds into the egg white mixture and toss to coat.  Pour cinnamon sugar mixture over and stir until all almonds are coated.  Spread almonds onto a baking sheet and bake at 300 degrees for 20-30 minutes, turning occasionally to prevent burning.  Cool before serving ~ if you are able to wait that long!

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