Do you know that chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans are full of healthy benefits? This humble legume packs a whole bunch of amazing nutrients with immense dietary goodness.
Chickpeas contain good levels of amino acids and minerals like calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium and selenium – all of which contribute to our wellbeing. They help with improving digestion and promote heart health.
Chickpeas are a great source of fibre and plant-based protein. The high fibre content of chickpeas makes them an ideal choice for people with diabetes as they have a fairly low glycemic index and helps lower blood glucose levels. High fibre works well in weight management and reduces cholesterol which in turn reduces risks of many diseases.
With all the great nutritious qualities that make chickpeas such a great addition to our diet, they are affordable and convenient. We can easily get chickpeas in the supermarkets and grocery stores, either in dry or canned form. They are incredibly versatile – you can use chickpeas in salads, soups, as dips and cooked with a variety of ingredients! One of my favourite snacks is boiled chickpeas, with dried chillies, shallots and curry leaves thrown in to enhance the flavours.
Personally, I think canned chickpeas, sourced mainly from U.S. Pulses are so easy to use. You can eat the chickpeas on their own straight from the can or you can incorporate them into your favourite recipes. Here I’d like to share my version of Kung Po Chicken using chickpeas. It’s a quick stir-fry dish, very appetising and goes excellently with plain rice.
KUNG PO CHICKEN WITH U.S. CHICKPEAS
300g sliced boneless chicken (marinate with 1tbsp cornflour, 1tsp salt & pepper)
200g canned U.S. Chickpeas
2 pips garlic (chopped)
5 dried red chillies (cut into 1” lengths)
5 pieces thinly-sliced ginger
Half a red capsicum
Some spring onions (cut into ½” lengths)
Mix together in a bowl:
2 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp dark soya sauce
1 tbsp light soya sauce
1 tbsp black vinegar
2 tbsp sugar
4 tbsp water
Salt to taste
Oil for frying
1 tbsp Shiaoxing wine
- Heat up sufficient oil in wok to deep-fry the chicken pieces quickly (2-3 min). Dish out.
- Have about 2-3 tbsp oil remain in the wok. Add in garlic, ginger and dried chillies, stir fry for 2-3 min.
- Put the chicken pieces, U.S. Chickpeas and red capsicum into the wok together with all the sauces. Toss everything well in the sauce for about 3-4 min. until sauce thickens.
- Add in the Shiaoxing wine, spring onions, mix well, remove from stove and serve!
More information and ideas on cooking pulses can be found in: