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Crunchy BBQ chickpeas

There are very few better ways to spend a rainy night than to cuddle up on the couch and watch a good movie.

We’ve actually had a few really lovely days here in Shetland lately, but Sunday night was windy, a bit wet and generally, as a Shetlander would say, dreich. Perfect movie weather.

I am a bit of a snacker, to say the least. The evenings are the worst. I can go for the entire day eating sensibly and making wise choices, but somehow in the evening all my abilities to reason seem to wash away in the tide of evening relaxation.

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Usually my snack of choice would be anything involving chocolate, but sometimes, especially on movie night, you need something crunchy and savory. This brief used to be filled by Pringles.

Though scoffing an entire tube of BBQ Pringles seems delightful at the time, the day after I tend to end up with a gross, lethargic, highly-processed-potato-snack hang over, and consequently end up massively rueful, and feeling a bit absurd about being lured so easily into the Pringles trap knowing that the outcome would be the same gross-ness as it always is. Not so magnificent.

But then what is a gal to do on a snacky movie night? The answer: roasted chickpeas.

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I had seen recipes for roasted chickpeas all over the internet for ages, but it wasn’t until about a month ago that I finally decided to take the chickpea plunge. I love chickpeas and use them a lot, so I usually have a big bag of dried ones stashed away. Making roasted chickpeas from dried ones takes a bit more forethought than with canned ones, obviously, as you need to soak them overnight first. Seems a bit weird to soak dried chickpeas and cook them only to dry them out again before eating them! But I’ll take the weird for the sake of this yummy, crunchy snack.

The first couple of times that I made them they ended up either still a little squishy in the middle (I like them to be really crunchy), or burnt on the outside. We have an old Rayburn, so getting a really even heat is a bit trickier than just setting the temperature on a dial and letting it heat up. There are vents and valves to contend with (though it’s a bit easier now than it was with our last Rayburn which we ran on coal and which no longer had any fire bricks between the fire and the oven). After a few attempts it occurred to me that maybe rather than trying to get them really crunchy during the roasting, I could dry them out a bit first, and then add the flavoring. I was thrilled when that batch turned out perfectly, flavorful, golden and really crunchy.

So far I’ve only made BBQ flavored ones as I love the BBQ flavored stuff, but I’ve seen recipes for plain salted ones, salt and vinegar ones, and for sweet ones like cinnamon flavored as well. I can’t wait to try out some other flavors.

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Armed with these, and a cup of tea, you’ll be all set for movie night, minus the horrible morning after snack regret.

Crunchy BBQ chickpeas
Crunchy BBQ flavored roasted chickpeas.
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Ingredients
  1. 400g cooked chickpeas (canned or dried)
  2. 2TBSP oil of your choice
  3. 1tsp runny honey
  4. 1/2tsp garlic powder
  5. 1tsp chili powder
  6. 1tsp smoked paprika
  7. 1tsp salt
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 150C.
  2. Drain and rinse the chickpeas and then spread them in a single layer in a roasting pan and put them in the oven until they’re quite well dried out and beginning to become crunchy, about 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a small cup or bowl mix together the garlic powder, chili powder, smoked paprika and salt. Make sure it’s as lump-free as possible.
  4. Add the oil to the spice mix and stir to form a runny paste.
  5. Take the chickpeas out of the oven and drizzle them with the honey. Stir to coat.
  6. Drizzle the paste over the chickpeas and stir them gently until they’re evenly coated.
  7. Place the roasting tin in the oven and leave them to cook until they’re evenly crunchy and the coating is dried out. Allow them to cool and then store in an airtight container.
Roots & Wren http://rootsandwren.com/

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