If I know I’m anticipating having a get-together that involves food (and, really, when doesn’t it), I like to test-drive a recipe and plan my menu. Next week I’m hosting a small gathering–a motley group of foodies, oenophiles, bookworms, and slackers alike. They’re as different and unique as snowflakes, but they all have one thing in common–they appreciate good food.
So while I’m slaving away in the kitchen (and, trust me, I will be) working on the main course, what will they gnosh on? I’m already planning on serving my favorite tapas and whatnot, but I want something with a bit of a kick that will pair nicely with what I’m sure will be multiple bottles of libation which brings me to my secret little weapon: ceci frito (or fried chickpeas). They are ridiculously easy to make and lend themselves well to modification, so feel free to add your own twist to this recipe.
Kosher salt to taste
2 c. cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed
1 tbsp. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp. parsley, finely chopped
2 tsp. cayenne pepper
Fresh Lemon Juice
1. Heat the olive oil and garlic in a large bottomed skillet (make sure to choose a pan which will allow the chickpeas to spread out in a single layer) over medium-high heat. When the oil is heated & begins to shimmer, add the cayenne pepper and the chickpeas; season well with salt.
2. Increase the heat and cook, shaking the pan and tossing the chickpeas occasionally until the chickpeas are crispy on the outside (note: some of them will start to pop).
3. Garnish with chopped parsley and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Toss well and serve immediately.