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[personal profile] lab posting in [community profile] batchlunch
So, sometime last week I was thinking, "hm, steak sandwich", but that thought was overtaken by "or, you could make chickpeas again." The following is a recipe from The Spanish Table", but there is another version here. I do prefer the Spanish Table one because it's more flavourful and tastes almost exactly like the tapas served in a bar around the corner; not to say that smittenkitchen's is not excellent.



2 packages (each 10 ounces) fresh spinach (if you use bunches of fresh spinach, remove hard stems)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for frying optional bread
4 large garlic cloves, chopped (I used two, because, uhm, I actually have to talk to people after lunch)
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 small pinch of crushed red peper flakes
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 large pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
4 plum tomatoes, chopped (I used 4 ounces of canned tomatoes)
1 can (15 ounces) chipeas, with their liquid
1 medium-size pinch of saffron, pulverized in a mortar and steeped in 2 tablespoons of very hot water
1 small pinch of sugar
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
6 slices of bread (optional)

1. Rinse but don't drain spinach, placing it in a large, wide saucepan over medium heat and cover pan. Cook the spinach with water that clings to its leaves until wilted, 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer spinach to colander and squeeze out the excess moisture by pressing on the spinach with the back of a spoon. When just cool enough to handle, chop medium fine (or don't, I usually do because it's faster easier to eat chopped).

2 Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium low heat. Add half of the garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the paprika, red pepper flakes, cumin, oregano, nutmeg and cinnamon and stir for a few seconds. Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring until the mixture is slightly thickened and reduced, about 5 minutes. Add the spinach and the chickpeas with their liquid and bring to a simmer. Add saffron, sugar, salt and black pepper and cook the spinach, uncovered, stirring once or twice, until the spinach is very tender and has absorbed some of the liquid, 8 to 10 minutes.

3. While the spinach is cooking, place the remaining garlic in a mortar and, using a pestle, crush it to paste, adding vinegar to it and stirring the mixture into the spinach. Cook until flavours meld, 2 to 3 minutes. Let the spinach cool to warm, about 15 minutes before serving.


Om, nom, nom. I ate this for lunch the whole week with rice or bread and tomatoes or couscous. Keeps for ages in the fridge. (Although people do look strangely at you over here if you eat espinacas con garbanzos for lunch, but what the hell, it's chickpeas.)
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