We’re inviting some of our trusted nonprofit and Star Chef partners to take over the Bon Appétit blog and share their best tips, recipes, and fun links. This week’s guest curators are Jennifer DiFrancesco and Josephine Morris from the Humane Society of the United States, with which Bon Appétit has been proud to work with since 2005.
Ah, the garbanzo bean. These legumes have been a staple in my kitchen, at home and professionally, for years. Chickpeas have a creamy texture and a buttery, almost nutty flavor, and they have become one of my go-to proteins. Not only are they incredibly versatile, finding their way into my salads, snacks, entrées, and even desserts, but they are shelf stable, protein packed, and surprisingly inexpensive.
Don’t have walnuts? Skip them! Love garlic? Add more! Want a bit of heat to the dish? Toss in a couple pinches of crushed red-pepper flakes. This recipe is ready to be customized to your liking, so have fun with it.
Being a great source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, chickpeas may help lower your cholesterol, aid in digestion and help control blood sugar, which are all excellent reasons to highlight them in your next meal. And as Bon Appétit Management Company promotes so well, plant proteins reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, too.
The garbanzo bean slider recipe I am sharing with you is a personal favorite and uses ingredients that are commonly found in your kitchen. Don’t have walnuts? Skip them! Love garlic? Add more! Want a bit of heat to the dish? Toss in a couple pinches of crushed red-pepper flakes. This recipe is ready to be customized to your liking, so have fun with it.
Finish the sliders with your favorite toppings and condiments, and you are ready for a feast! Try adding some shaved red onions with a dollop of guacamole and a little bit of hot sauce. Or add some freshness with a citrus slaw, which not only adds a crunchy element, but kicks in some bold flavor from the citrus. Those grape or cherry tomatoes that are about to shrivel up? Roast them in the oven with some olive oil, salt and pepper until they blister, and then place them on top of the sliders with a little garlic aquafaba “mayo” — another delicious option!
Just remember to save the liquid from your cans of garbanzo beans. Another fun recipe follows the sliders that will amaze you.
Garbanzo Bean Sliders
Makes 9 sliders
1 cup onion, diced small
1/8 cup fresh garlic, minced
1.5 cups cooked garbanzo beans (save the cooking water or water from can)
1/4 cup walnuts
1 tablespoon cilantro
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/2 cup olive oil, divided, plus 1 tablespoon
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
9 slider buns
Heat tablespoon oil in a skillet. Sweat onions and garlic until soft.
Drain garbanzo beans and pulse in a food processor until broken. (Do not over-process; we’re not making hummus here!)
In a medium bowl, combine the processed garbanzo beans, cooked onions and garlic, walnuts, cilantro, flour, cumin, 1/4 cup oil, salt, and black pepper. Mix until completely combined. Add any additional herb/spice options of your choosing, such as crushed red pepper flakes and/or fresh herbs.
Form 9 patties from the garbanzo bean mixture. Heat remaining oil on griddle and heat. Once oil is hot, cook patties until golden brown, approximately 5-7 minutes on each side.
Serving suggestion:One patty on your choice of bread, top with 1 ounce of caramelized onions or other toppings and condiments such as “aquafaba mayo,” recipe below
Makes 1 cup. Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Everyone knows the routine of opening the can of chickpeas, draining the liquid and rinsing the beans, right? Well, time to start saving that precious liquid, which is known as aquafaba, and turn it into a sustainable condiment to accompany your next dish! Emulsifying the aquafaba (chickpea cooking water) with a stick blender and a few common ingredients creates a wonderfully creamy homemade egg-free mayo.
Get creative and make new completely dairy-free aiolis or cremas. I like to grate a clove of garlic into mine and use it to top my sandwiches and wraps. Or add lime juice and zest with chopped cilantro to jazz up your next taco night at home! The possibilities are endless. The great thing about aquafaba is that you can freeze the liquid in the freezer until you are ready to use it. I save mine in freezer bags, or even in an ice cube tray if you have any to spare! Why buy mayo when you can make a fresh, delicious one in minutes?!
3 tablespoons aquafaba (chickpea cooking water)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon mustard powder (can substitute with Dijon mustard)
1 cup vegetable oil (not EVOO, but can substitute another neutral-tasting oil)
Combine the aquafaba, lemon juice, vinegar, maple syrup, and mustard in a tall container. With an immersion blender, blend to combine (or use a regular blender on low).
While blending, slowly drip and stream in the oil (a tablespoon at a time) until it thickens into a white, creamy mayo.
Store leftovers in a jar in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Jennifer DiFrancesco is a culinary specialist with the Humane Society of the United States. With over 20 years of food service experience, Jennifer works with food service companies on recipe development to not only diversify their menus, but to create delicious flavorful plant-based meals that have their guests craving more.