Warm Weather Food – I’m Still Hanging On To Summer. Chickpea Spread and Black Bean and Corn Salad



I am hanging on to the last days of summer. I refuse to share recipes for soups or anything that has to be cooked in an oven until it is officially fall and the weather is chilly. I know many of you are treasuring your last days at the beach or a boat excursion on the water before you winterize your boat. For me, it’s a sad day when the pool cover goes on and the patio furniture is put away—no more summer entertaining. But while I can, I am still grilling and making summer salads. For outdoor dining, whether it’s a backyard party, a picnic at the beach, or a day on the boat, I like to bring foods that will not spoil. Both the Chickpea spread and the Black bean and corn salad are quick and easy to make. Mix them into a salad or fold them in a wrap or pita pocket. The black bean and corn salad is a great side dish and the chickpea spread is delicious as an appetizer with pita or crostini toasts. The truth is, I don’t only make these salads in the summer. My family likes them so much I make a batch of each every couple of weeks. 

Chickpea spread

1 large (29oz.) can chickpeas

2 cloves garlic crushed

2 scallions sliced thin

1/8 tsp. paprika

Juice and zest of 1 lemon (zest is optional – zest will add a stronger lemony flavor)

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

5- 6 fresh basil leaves sliced in shreds

¼ cup olive oil

2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. pepper

1 tsp. sugar

1 tsp. oregano

Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl. The texture of this is not smooth. It is mashed, but lumpy. Some of the chickpeas will get mashed and some will stay whole. Do not use a blender. I used a pastry blender. It’s an unconventional use for this tool, but it works great.


Black bean and corn salad

1 large (29oz.) can black bean

3 ears of corn or 1-11 ounce can

1 red pepper diced

2 cloves garlic crushed

The zest and juice of 2 limes

¼ cup vegetable or canola oil

¼ cup fresh chopped cilantro or 2 tsp. dried

2 scallion sliced

2 tsp. turmeric

2 tsp. salt

½ tsp. pepper

If using the fresh corn, boil for three minutes, then allow to cool. Cut the corn off the cob and place in a large bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients. I suggest adding the salt, pepper and herbs slowly. Taste and add as needed. Trust your preferences. If you hate cilantro – try parsley instead. If you want more heat – add more pepper.

Hint*- The fresh corn makes a huge difference and…we are in prime corn season!

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