I’m so excited and I just can’t hide it (yes, I am singing that very catchy 1982 song by the Pointer Sisters and no, I am not ashamed to admit it!). Seriously, how else is a girl supposed to feel when she stumbles across a new fantastic vegan recipe site? The last time I was this excited was when I purchased the Oh She Glows cookbook. I fully admit to having vegan-girl crushes; for a while there all I could talk about was how any recipe by Robin Robertson transformed my kitchen into a plant-based paradise. I was so blissfully happy trying on recipes, like Imelda Marcos with a new pair of shoes (young ‘uns, this is what google is for, type in “Imelda Marcos” and you will learn some history; slightly useless history in the grand scheme of things but still, history). And then, like love affairs are sometimes wont to do, the passion and intensity that marked the beginning of our courtships began to wilt like an extra head of kale forgotten in the back of the crisper, and I began to resent all the time it took to chop, chop, chop and stir, stir, stir just to keep the love alive. Sometimes I just couldn’t take it anymore. I would leave my once beloved recipe books on the empty countertop and sneak out to A&W for a veggie burger and sweet potato fries. I know, I know; the shame of it all has been eating away at me with each salty processed bite but I couldn’t stop! And then, I met her. My new vegan girl crush: vegangela.com. Kinda ironic that she is Canadian (although living in Sydney, Australia – this girl is smart!) and has the same first name as my other Canadian recipe heroine Angela Liddon! Anyway, the best part is I have been inspired to try new recipes again and we have been feasting on her fabulous Coconut Curry Lentil Soup, Vegan Tortilla Pierogies (mmm, vegan sour cream) and Mushroom Soup, all absolutely delicious AND with the ability to make you feel like the new vegan Martha Stewart. I’ve made all those recipes as is but I tweaked her almost raw curried chickpea & veggie “noodle” salad just enough to post my own take on it. This would be a perfect salad to bring to a summer potluck or pack for a picnic and it does great as make-ahead lunches. I know love can be blind but I promise you this salad is worth it; I ran some over to my neighbor right away and she immediately requested I bring it to her BBQ next week. With either version you can’t go wrong and I will bet you just might find yourself falling in love again.
Curried Chickpea & Veggie Pasta Salad
- 1 cup green cabbage, cut into thin strips
- 1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
- 2 carrots, julienned or cut into thin ribbons with a peeler
- 1 cup cooked whole wheat or multigrain spaghetti noodles or bowtie pasta
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- ¼ cup cilantro (or mint), chopped (optional)
- 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- salt and pepper to taste
- pinch of red chili flakes (optional)
- ⅓ cup crunchy or smooth natural peanut or almond butter
- 2 tbsp lime juice
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp curry powder
- 1 tbsp fresh grated ginger
- 2-3 tbsp water (as needed)
- In a small bowl, mix all dressing ingredients, adding just enough water to thin it out to a thick dressing consistency.
- Pour the dressing over the veggies, pasta and chickpeas; mix until well-coated with the dressing. Season with salt and pepper, and red chili flakes (if using). Eat immediately or refrigerate until ready to use.