3 Great Chickpea Recipes: (# 2) Chickpea Casserole

by Andrea on March 13, 2012

If you read my previous post about chickpeas you’ll know that chickpeas are super good for you and easy to incorporate into your diet. Today I’m going to share a recipe that is a vegan family favorite–chickpea casserole.

Mother with her namesake

This comfort food is a veganized version of my mother’s tuna casserole.  On Mondays after school she gave private music lessons downstairs in our family room.  Because she was teaching she always prepared a casserole or meatloaf in advance so Dad could just pop it in the oven.  By the time her students were gone, supper was on the table.  And let me tell you, it was the best tuna casserole in the world. It was creamy but not soupy and the noodles weren’t mushy. Gratefully, it was absent of peas too (not a big fan of peas in my casserole).  The best part was the top.  Instead of using bread or ritz cracker crumbs, she used Post Grape-Nuts Flakes cereal coated in melted butter.  She also used canned cream of mushroom soup for the base. Is it just me or was every casserole in the 70′s and 80′s made with a can of cream-of-something soup? At any rate, that canned soup made preparation ridiculously simple and quick. Mother’s tuna casserole was one of the first things I learned to cook for that reason. While I no longer use canned soup, this recipe is still very easy and comes out deliciously reminiscent of those Monday evening suppers.

CHICKPEA RECIPE #2: Chickpea Casserole

An easy dish to make ahead of time and freeze.  I serve it paired with broccoli or kale.  This meal wins a kids choice award in our home!

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of pasta (pick your favorite~ we usually use penne but the photos show spaghetti noodles which is what I had on hand)
  • olive or canola oil
  • 1 medium sized onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup mushrooms (white, crimini, or baby bella), finely chopped
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 4 Cups non-dairy milk  (1 32 oz. tetra pack of plain soy, rice, or almond)
  • 1/2 Cup flour
  • 4 teaspoons vegetarian chicken-flavor bouillon (I use Better Than Bouillon brand Vegetarian No Chicken Base)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 Cups drained chickpeas, slightly mashed or broken apart with a chopper or processor (you don’t want them mushy)

For the crumble top:

  • 2 Tablespoons non-dairy butter (Earth Balance is my favorite)
  • 1 Cup bread crumbs
  • seasoning(s) of choice (I like to use paprika, garlic powder, turmeric, and black pepper)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Boil water and cook pasta according to directions. Shorten the cooking time a minute or two for al dente pasta (it will finish cooking in the oven). While the water comes to a boil and you get the pasta going, in a large skillet or sauce pan saute the onion in the oil until it is golden brown and starts to carmelize. Add the mushrooms and garlic and saute for another minute.

Add 3 cups of the milk to the onions and mushrooms and continue cooking on low heat.  Mix the half cup of flour with the last cup of milk, and stir or whisk thoroughly to make a smooth paste.  Add this to the pot on the stove and stir until thickened and bubbly.  Stir in bouillon and salt and/or pepper to taste.  Turn off the heat.  Add the chickpeas and stir well.

By now your pasta should be cooked, drained, and in your casserole dish. Pour the chickpea mixture over the noodles and stir to mix everything in well.  Set aside.

Melt the butter and mix in the bread crumbs and seasoning(s).  Spread the bread crumbs evenly over the top.  Freeze for later or bake approximately 20 minutes or until the casserole is bubbly.  Enjoy!

Be sure to read my next post  as I’m sharing another family favorite–Mexican Tacos, cooked authentically.  If you like Mexican food, you will totally dig these!

 

 

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