Raw Beet and Chickpea Salad

Beets and chickpeas.
Beets and chickpeas.

Raw beets.  I can’t get enough of them. Paul is still warming up to them, but he’s going to come around.  I basically use raw beets as a carrot substitute 1) because they’re beautiful, 2) because they’re delicious, 3) because I can usually get them right out of my garden or fresh from the farmer’s market.  In fact, we got our beets from the King’s Corner Market right in downtown Tully this past Tuesday from Grey Barn Farm, along with some Music and German Red varieties of garlic.  Dang, it is so good to be home!

This salad is quick and easy.  Perfect for a potluck or picnic at the park (Ha!).

Ingredients
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/3 cup olive oil
2-3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

3 medium sized beets, shredded
2 cups cooked chickpeas, cooled to room temperature
1/2 cup whole dates, roughly chopped
1/4 cup fresh mint, chopped
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/3 cup toasted almonds, sliced

Directions
1) For the dressing, combine the first six ingredients into a lidded jar and shake vigorously.  If you want to get extra fancy, you can add the cumin to a dry skillet and toast for 2-3 minutes, or until aromatic.  Sometimes I do this, sometimes I don’t!
2) Combine the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Toss with the dressing and serve.

This isn’t as pretty after mixing it up with the beets, of course!  But it’s completely delicious, and wonderful as cold leftovers for lunch!

Adapted from 101 Cookbooks by Heidi Swanson.

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