This is a healthy, vegetarian-friendly and dairy-free side dish that is surprisingly delicious. It is full of flavour, it has great texture, and it’s something unexpected. Everyone that has tried it has been pleasantly surprised, too. I found this recipe in a cookbook that I won in a baking contest. I am really glad that I tried it, because it’s not something that would normally entice me. I hope that you’ll try it, too. Let me know what you think of it!
Chickpea, Corn and Carrot Loaf Recipe
adapted from Rose Reisman
1/2 cup canned corn kernels, drained (Note: I tried making this loaf without corn, once, and it was still delicious.)
1 x 19 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 cup coarsely grated carrots
handful of cilantro, finely chopped
1 large egg
3 tablespoons of well-stirred tahini
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
3 tablespoons seasoned dry breadcrumbs
1/4 cup finely sliced green onion, green parts only
1 large garlic clove, finely minced
vegetable oil cooking spray
coarse sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a standard sized, non-stick loaf pan (8 inch x 4 inch) with vegetable oil cooking spray. Then line the bottom of the loaf pan with parchment paper. Ensure that the ends of the parchment paper are long enough to hang over two sides of the loaf pan. Set the prepared loaf pan aside. Meanwhile, in a small skillet heated over medium heat and lightly sprayed with vegetable oil, cook the corn and saute until lightly browned or at least heated through. This will enhance the flavour of the corn.
Place the chickpeas, carrot, corn, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade and process the ingredients lightly. Then add the cilantro, egg, tahini, lemon juice, breadcrumbs, green onions, and a pinch of black pepper and process lightly until all of the ingredients are just mixed. Do not puree the ingredients. Depending on the brand of chickpeas that you use, you may not need to add salt. If desired, add salt to taste, but keep in mind that the mixture contains raw egg.
Transfer the mixture to the prepared loaf pan and use your hands to pat it down evenly. Cover the mixture with the parchment paper ends to prevent the loaf from drying out. Then place the loaf pan in a larger roasting pan. Pour water into the roasting pan until the level of water reaches halfway up the loaf pan. Bake in the preheated oven until the loaf is heated through and feels slightly firm to the touch. When done, remove the loaf pan from the water and allow it to cool slightly. Then remove the loaf from the pan, either by using the parchment paper ends like handles, or by inverting the loaf pan onto a serving plate. Cut the loaf into slices and serve immediately.