Thankfully, everyone is healthy once again. At least physically so. Emma is still emotionally bit out-of-sorts because she was so incredibly spoiled during her brief battle with that stomach bug. Paul and I were so worried about her that we catered to her every whim and fancy and we are now paying dearly for it because she has been acting like a spoiled, whiny, entitled despot ever since. Needless to say, she has spent a lot of time in the thinking corner over the past couple of days.
During her illness, Emma proved to be a pretty terrible patient. At first, she was extremely uncooperative when we told her that under no circumstances could she eat cheese puffs or gulp milk. She wasn't even keeping down small sips of water, and yet she was begging us for corn dogs. During the first night of her illness, I woke up to the sounds of her being sick around 1:00 AM. After she was done, she asked me for a drink of water. I said she could only have a small sip and that was it until her stomach had settled. She took her sip and I tucked her back into bed and then headed to my bedroom. Shortly thereafter, perhaps no more than 45 minutes, I awoke to a strange scraping sound coming from downstairs. I headed downstairs and into the kitchen to find that Emma had shoved one of the dining chairs to the counter top and climbed to the top so she could reach the cabinet that held the drinking glasses. When I arrived, she had just finished filling the glass with some water from the dispenser on the fridge. When she saw me, she froze but then quickly began gulping the water down before I could reach her and take the glass away. The poor thing really was thirsty. Unfortunately, she did end up getting sick again within 15 minutes and we had to re-explain the rules to her. Like I said, she was not the best patient in terms of cooperation.
All this talk about getting sick is probably a great time to transition into the recipe I would like to share. As an apology for the not-so-appetizing tales of sick Emma, how about I share a few pictures I just found on my computer that were taken on my Mom's phone last summer. They're too cute and really made me realize how much my kids have grown over the past few months! I just realized while adding the pictures here that a lot of them feature us with dinosaurs for some reason.
Transitioning onto the recipe, Paul often makes fun of my crazy love of all things vegetable. While I am not a vegetarian by a long stretch, my heart really does gravitate towards plant-based meals. I have had the recipe for this Smashed Chickpea Sandwich bookmarked for a very long time and used Lent as an excuse to finally make it. I can't believe I waited so long - it is so good! I know chickpeas can be an acquired taste for some people, but the flavor of them works so well with the fresh dill, the diced pickles, and the mustard. The flavors are very reminiscent of a good tuna salad sandwich, only I found this much more filling! I made a big batch and used it for my lunch every day last week and it was something I looked forward to eating each day. I made it into a sandwich the first day I had it, but ended up serving it over lettuce with some accompanying carrots, sprouts, or hard-boiled eggs the remaining days. It was great either way. This will definitely become a part of my regular lunch rotation.
Smashed Chickpea Salad Sandwich
adapted slightly from Vanilla and Bean
1 can Chickpeas, drained and rinsed (aka Garbanzo)
1/4 cup + 1/2 tablespoon Dill Pickles, finely chopped
1/4 cup Purple Onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons Mayo
2 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons Lemon Juice
1/4 + 1/8 teaspoons Salt
2 teaspoons Dill Weed, fresh-chopped
8-10 grinds of fresh Black Pepper
Hard Boiled Egg
Using a potato masher, rough-mash the chickpeas until most is smashed but there are still some whole chickpeas left. Add the pickles, onion, mayo, mustard, vinegar, salt, dill, and black pepper. Mix well. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.
Pile onto a good, sturdy whole grain bread or serve atop a pile of arugula with shredded carrots, tomatoes, and a hard boiled egg.