The months leading up to summer are perhaps my favorite months of the year. Much needed spring showers wash away the winter gloom and leave me anticipating the beautiful colors of nature which will be arriving soon. The bright colors of spring are beautifully reflected in the flavorful tomato and chickpea salad I made earlier in the week.
The bright red color of the cherry tomatoes in this tomato and chickpea salad remind me so much of the gorgeous lilies my sister-in-law gave me from her family’s farm. Bridget brought me the bulbs when she came for a visit several years ago. Each year around this time, the lilies bloom and reveal an incredible shade of reddish orange. They truly don’t look real and colors so closely resemble the color of the tomatoes.
Along with the tomatoes, I mix in chickpeas which give this tomato and chickpea salad a buttery, nutty taste. Then, I mix in a handful of finely chopped fresh cilantro and finally, stir in a simple vinaigrette.
For the vinaigrette, I whisk together olive oil and white wine vinegar and add a pinch of tarragon. One of the things I love most about this viniagrette is that it goes so well as a dressing for any salad. I even use it to marinate vegetables before grilling.
As an afterthought, I sprinkled a little feta on top. If you’re a fan of feta, then I would encourage you to add more than a sprinkle and mix it in with the other ingredients.
This Chickpea and Tomato Salad was enjoyed of course, outside on our patio with a lovely glass of chardonnay.
Tomato and Chickpea Salad
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
- 1 cup bunch cilantro, finely chopped, about 1 packed
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon
- pinch of salt and pepper
- crumbled feta cheese (optional)
- Place the chickpeas, tomatoes and cilantro in a bowl and mix well.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, white wine vinegar, tarragon, salt and pepper.
- Pour over the chickpeas and tomato mixture.
- Stir to blend
- Top with feta if desired