Chickpea Salad looks just like tuna salad.
No one really needs a recipe for tuna salad. In fact, pushing your own tuna variation on others is akin to over-sharing your religious beliefs. Most folks tend to like the tuna salad they grew up on anyway, so best to let it be. Chopped hamburger dill chips and a shot of pickle juice are the critical ingredients in the tuna salad made by my grandmother, my mother, and me. (Note to self– share this important info with son and daughter).
Are you a sweet pickle person instead? Everything is up for grabs in tuna salad land. Real mayo or salad dressing? Celery, onion, lemon juice, hard cooked egg, chopped olives, shredded carrot, parsley?
Make it your way, but think about adding some chickpeas.
Chickpea salad, with or without the tuna.
Perhaps fueled by the hummus craze, vegetarian diets, and our worries about mercury-laced canned tuna, chickpea salad is coming on strong. Again, you really don’t need a recipe for this spectacular salad that basically swaps your canned tuna for coarsely mashed chickpeas. Make it like you always do and add a dash of Thai fish sauce for a little ocean umami, if you like. It’s cheap, remarkably delicious, and a lunchtime workhorse.
Folks that don’t really like mayo are in luck, too. Drizzle in some olive oil and maybe a little more pickle or lemon juice. It won’t be creamy, but it will hold together and make a great sandwich filling or snack with crackers or pita.
Still got a hankering for tuna? Throw some in! You don’t need this recipe, but here it is anyway.
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas (one 15.5-ounce can works), drained
- 1 can (5 ounces) tuna, drained (optional)
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 2 tablespoons to 1/4 cup chopped red onion (or any kind of onion you like)
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 2 to 3 tablespoons chopped dill or sweet pickles
- 1 tablespoons pickle juice or lemon juice
- Sprinkle of Thai fish sauce (optional)
Coarsely mash the chickpeas in a medium mixing bowl with a potato masher or big spoon.
Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
Serve just like tuna salad on a sandwich with lettuce and tomato, with salad greens, or with crackers, how ever you like.