Chickpeas with Spiced Tomato Sauce, Carrot & Preserved Lemon Salad and Poached Eggs
Chef-owner Heather Sperling
Bowls continue to be a popular way to menu plant-forward dishes. At Botanica in Los Angeles, chef-owner Heather Sperling offers a Moroccan-inspired bowl of chickpeas flavored with a spiced tomato sauce. A refreshing carrot and preserved lemon salad adds texture, color and temperature contrast. Poached eggs complete the presentation, increase the protein content and add richness when the yolk is stirred into the bowl.
½ lb. dry chickpeas, soaked overnight
2 bay leaves
½ small onion
3 garlic cloves, peeled
1 large piece kombu
1 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. olive oil
Spiced tomato sauce
2 tbsp. olive oil
½ small onion, finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp. garam masala
1 can (16 oz.) high-quality tomatoes
¼ cup fresh orange juice
Salt to taste
Carrot & preserved lemon salad
2 tbsp. preserved lemon, chopped
2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
½ tsp. Dijon mustard
½ tsp. water
¼ tsp. sugar
Salt to taste
½ cup olive oil
Mint and cilantro leaves
½ cup cooked chickpeas (recipe above)
2 cups spiced tomato sauce (recipe above)
1 tbsp. dried currants
4 tbsp. plain yogurt
4 eggs, poached
Carrot and preserved lemon salad (recipe above)
Sea salt, to taste
- Prepare chickpeas: Place all ingredients in a large pot. Cover with enough water to bring the water level up to 2 to 3 inches above the beans. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low. Partially cover and simmer until chickpeas are fully tender.
- Let chickpeas cool in cooking liquid. When cool, drain chickpeas and discard the onion, garlic, bay leaves and kombu. Set aside.
- Prepare spiced tomato sauce: In saucepan, warm olive oil over medium-low heat. Add onions and garlic; sweat until fully softened but not colored.
- Stir in garam masala; increase heat to medium. Saute 1 to 2 minutes until spices are toasted and fragrant.
- Crush tomatoes by hand; add tomatoes and all their juices to saucepan. Stir well and simmer until tomato liquid reduces by half and flavors are fully combined. Remove from heat; stir in orange juice and season well with salt. Set aside.
- Prepare carrot salad: In blender container, combine preserved lemons, lemon juice, mustard, water, sugar and a pinch of salt; blend until smooth. With the motor running, drizzle in olive oil until emulsified. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
- Use a peeler to shave carrots into thin ribbons. Toss shaved carrots with preserved lemon dressing until evenly coated. Right before plating, toss with a handful of mint and cilantro leaves.
- Complete bowls: Combine ½ lb. cooked chickpeas, 2 cups tomato sauce and currants in saucepan; bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Once warmed, spoon chickpea mixture into four individual serving bowls. Place a tablespoon of yogurt in center of each and place a poached egg on top. Drape one-fourth the carrot salad around each egg and season egg with sea salt. Serve immediately.
Photo courtesy of American Egg Board