Moroccan Chickpeas with Roasted Peppers, Parsley & Mint

I’m in the Saskatoon airport. (My favourite airport in the world – small, never any lineups, a Tim Horton’s right beside the security gate, which likewise never has lineups. Cushy seats with plugins beside or under each seat, and fast, free wireless. Shouldn’t this be LA?)

I’ve just finished a 3 day tour of pulse farms and production facilities in rural Saskatchewan with Sue and a group of writers and researchers. Lunch today was at Simon’s Fine Foods, where we had a sort of hands-on cooking lesson with various pulses.

We were divvied into groups, and I got to cook with Sue and Cynthia Sass (check her out with Martha and Rachel!), but really mostly Cynthia and I chatted and I took photos while Sue did all the work.

Wait, you don’t know what a pulse is? Don’t sweat it – most of us outside the UK aren’t familiar with the term. I’m hoping Jamie will start cooking with them a little more often, so the term becomes as familiar as he made rocket. Outside of the gym, the term pulse refers to legumes – lentils, peas, chickpeas and beans. (You can learn more about pulses on the Saskatchewan Pulse Growers website.)

We’re continuing our research, learning more about how and where legumes are grown and how they’re processed by tramping about in fields, eating fresh lentils straight from their pods, talking to farmers and nutrition researchers and processors and cooks. It’s all very fascinating, and we now know more about how lentils are grown than we probably ever thought we would.

The release date of Spilling the Beans, by the way, is September 21. My parents’ anniversary. (A good omen I think, considering they’ve enjoyed a long and healthy marriage, and have taken to snuggling and smooching even more lately. Blech.)


(OK, I wrote all that last night, got home at around midnight and discovered that I yet again left a small but essential cord -the one that connects camera and computer- in my hotel room. So sorry for the time lapse while I found another cord. I’m not actually in the Saskatoon airport anymore.)

Moroccan Chickpeas with Roasted Peppers, Parsley & Mint


August 11, 2011

Recipe courtesy of Saskatchewan Pulse Growers and Simon's Fine Foods

  • Makes: Makes lots.


canola oil, for cooking

1 yellow onion, finely chopped

2 tsp cumin

1 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp ground coriander

1/2 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp cardamom

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp cayenne

1 Tbsp grated fresh ginger

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 small can tomato paste

2 Tbsp raisins

1 Tbsp chopped dried apricots (we used more!)

4 cups cooked chickpeas (keep the cooking liquid)

1 roasted red pepper, chopped

2 Tbsp chopped fresh mint leaves

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley (we used more!)

juice of a lemon


1In a large skillet, saute the onion in a skiff of canola oil over medium-high heat until soft. Add the cumin, coriander, turmeric, cardamom, nutmeg and cayenne and cook for a minute.

2Add the garlic and ginger and cook for 30 seconds. Add the tomato paste, raisins and apricots and a splash of cooking liquid (or tomato juice) and bring to a simmer - it should be saucy. Add the chickpeas to the pan and stir to coat. Cook for a bit to cook off any excess liquid if need be. Add the red pepper, mint and parsley and squeeze over the lemon. Toss to combine and serve warm or refrigerate until chilled - allowing the mixture to marinate for a few hours (or a day) will help the flavours improve.


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27 comments on “Moroccan Chickpeas with Roasted Peppers, Parsley & Mint

  1. Erica B.
    August 11, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    Love it! We use chickpeas a lot but most often in hummus. I’m always on the lookout for new ways to prep them. Thanks! and Thank you to Simon et al for sharing the recipe.

    Congrats to your folks on their upcoming anniversary and to you and Sue as well for finally having a date for Spilling the Beans – I’ll have to head over to chapters and pre-order 🙂

  2. Pat Lothrop
    August 11, 2011 at 9:24 pm

    Thanks for this Julie, we’re having a house concert this weekend and the band is vegetarian, I was just wondering where to look for inspiration, and here you show up! What do you think of bbqing a portobello along with this & call it a meal? (Still waiting for you to come out! :-))

  3. CathyH
    August 11, 2011 at 9:33 pm

    This sounds amazing!!!!

  4. Laurie from Burnaby
    August 11, 2011 at 10:45 pm

    I like chickpeas (gabanzo beans) but not whole like that. I like them in humous, and I know I need to eat pulses, but I can’t abide the mealiness (or whatever it is) when they’re whole. Can you cook more of them cooked until they’re coming apart? Please? I really need to eat them, but can’t find out how to cook them – beans, peas, lentils – all of it. (I can make a killer pea soup, but not the others)

  5. renee@sweetsugarbean
    August 12, 2011 at 7:42 am

    Many years ago, say like almost 20 (!!), I had a Summer job at the U of S, going out into lentil fields and weeding and/or picking them. Can’t remember exactly all the details. All I know I was out under the hot Sask sun, and not really loving it – I wanted to be at the lake with my friends! My love of lentils hasn’t swayed though – I’m a fan of all things pulse. And our airport is a little gem, isn’t it?!

  6. Robyn in Mountain (Ontario that is)
    August 12, 2011 at 7:54 am

    Those are the nicest looking chickpeas ever! Gonna have to give this recipe a try — minus the mint :-0 Thanks for this great recipe, Julie! Sounds like you are feeling better — yay!

  7. Fiona
    August 12, 2011 at 9:50 am

    That looks tasty! I wish my other half liked pulses more. I’m trying to go veg and I want to make beans more often (though I loathe three-bean salad). He is resistant. I can’t wait for your book.

  8. Kelly
    August 12, 2011 at 10:44 am

    Looks fabulous and gluten free too!

    For the chick peas, did you cook them yourself or are they ok if they are canned? I have only ever found them canned so I wanted to check where you recommend using the liquid too!


  9. JulieVR
    August 12, 2011 at 11:28 am

    Kelly – canned is totally fine!!

  10. Christine
    August 14, 2011 at 8:18 pm

    I just made this this morning. It was fantastic. It’s much better when it sits for several hours, then i re-heated it because i prefer it warm. Great flavor.

  11. kickpleat
    August 14, 2011 at 11:05 pm

    I make something similar every winter, it’s so good. I love the sweetness and the spice combined into something nice and healthy. This version looks delicious too and I’ll give it a try come the cooler days!

  12. Andrea
    August 16, 2011 at 6:10 am

    Made this last night using canned – absolutely delicious! Served with harrisa and couscous with almonds.
    Thanks for a great chickpea recipe. A good change from my usual Indian dish…

  13. Aggie
    August 17, 2011 at 11:34 am

    These look absolutely delicious!

  14. Laura's Last Ditch--Vintage Kitchenwares
    October 3, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    I love beans, and think this looks mighty tasty.

  15. Michelle
    October 6, 2011 at 5:40 pm

    I like to cook my chickpeas in a slow cooker on high for 3 hours or so. It requires planning but I find it reduces sodium.

  16. Simon's Fine Foods
    May 1, 2012 at 8:54 am

    This dish is absolutely a “make and wait” type of dish.
    Anything made with spices will develop flavours over a few days and “evolve”
    As far as the mint give it a try first, recipes have certain flavours in them for a reason and you can always take a small portion and add the fresh mint at the end, it will give a great fresh flavour to the dish.
    Hot or cold this dish rocks!
    We actually used dried chickpeas that day, they where soaked for 24 hours in lots of water at room temp then drained and rinsed and brought to the boil then simmered until tender.
    You can absolutely use canned products for speed.
    I’m a British Chef and Jamie actually did use chickpeas in his earlier books a fair bit.
    I’m glad you all enjoyed my recipe and feel free to follow me on facebook 🙂

  17. Simon's Fine Foods
    May 1, 2012 at 8:56 am

    PS- thats me in the picture 🙂

  18. Abbey
    June 27, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    I made this for lunch today with a Veggie sandwich. It was sooo delicious! I was worried about the flavors not setting in right away from the previous comments, so I halved the chickpeas and kept everything else the same. It tasted very flavorful to me. It was more tomatoe pasty than in the picture with how I did it, and it still tasted delicious.

  19. vic
    July 7, 2012 at 6:12 pm

    Nice, but where does the cinnamon go?

  20. simon reynolds
    August 29, 2012 at 8:07 pm

    Hey Vic,

    Add the Cinnamon with the cumin, coriander etc

  21. Eva
    May 23, 2013 at 11:59 am


    I just made this, and it’s delicious. Can’t wait to have it tomorrow when the spices are more prominent 🙂

    August 8, 2013 at 7:50 am

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  23. Elvia
    July 9, 2014 at 12:27 pm

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