Post sponsored by Frontier Co-op. See below for more details.
The first time I picked chard at the CSA, I was enamored with the beautiful color and the large, tender leaves. I had, up until that point, never encountered the greens. I researched, cooked, and fell in love with chard but over the years, I’ve found I don’t use it nearly as often. This year I planted two containers of chard. I’m hoping to have more of this beautiful chard in my life, hopefully in dishes like these Berbere chickpeas.
I typically like making my own spice blends but I also keep a select few pre-blended mixes on hand for quick meals. This Ethiopian Berbere blend relies on chilis, paprika, and a handful of warming spices- a perfect compliment to greens and beans. What I like about Frontier’s blend is that there’s still a kick but it’s not as spicy as other blends (or homemade versions) I’ve had before. Of course, start out with a smaller amount and gradually add more seasoning to suit your taste (and spice-level comfort!)
Berbere Chickpeas and Chard
A spicy and delicious chickpea dish featuring berbere seasoning and wilted chard.
- 2 cups shredded chard leaves (from one large bunch)
- 1 tablespoon olive or coconut oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed if using canned
- 2 to 3 teaspoons Frontier Co-op Berbere seasoning
- 1 1/2 cups tomato puree (or strained tomatoes)
- Salt, to taste (see note)
- 2 cups cooked farro or brown rice, for serving
- Parsley, for garnish
- Remove the stems from the chard leaves and chop into ½” wide strips. Heat a 10” skillet or pan over medium-low heat. Add the oil followed by the chard leaves. Cook and stir until the chard leaves are mostly wilted. Stir in the garlic and cook for another minute.
- Measure in the cooked chickpeas followed by the berbere spice. Stir and cook for a minute then add the tomato puree. Continue to cook until the dish is hot, 4 to 5 minutes. Taste and add salt as desired.
- Divide the cooked grains into two bowls and top with the chickpea mixture. Sprinkle with a heavy hand of parsley before serving.
Tips & Tricks: Frontier's Berbere seasoning contains salt so you will want to taste the dish before adding more. Also, Berbere spice is spicy (it's a chili pepper-based blend). Use accordingly by starting with a small amount (as little as 1/2 teaspoon) and add more to suit your taste. I usually end up with 2 teaspoons.
Nutrition: see the information.
Step by Step
Greens: Kale and collards are good substitutes for the chard. You could also use spinach but add it at the end since it wilts quicker than the chard.
Yogurt: I love to find balance in my cooking and the yogurt really brings the balance to this meal. I find the slight tartness from plain yogurt helps cut through the heat and really helps the flavor of the spices shine.
Red Lentils: Make this into more of a stew by replacing the beans with red lentils. Use 1 cup red lentils and cook in 2 cup water until tender. Add to the pan with the chard and follow the recipe (adding more liquid as needed).
As mentioned above, this particular version of the traditional Ethiopian spice blend has 12 spices including cayenne, fenugreek, coriander, cumin, and cinnamon. The blend is the perfect companion for vegetables and especially lovely when used in stews (which is a traditional usage: Misr Wot).
Disclosure: This recipe was created in partnership with Frontier Co-op. All thoughts and opinions are my own. It’s content like this that helps me keep this site running to provide the vegetarian recipes you see every week.