I reaaaaally enjoyed this recipe. I’d describe it almost as a spicy vegetarian tuna melt. It was pretty quick and easy to make as well which is a bonus in my book, as I tend to not prepare complex recipes when I come home at 8pm on weekdays! The crunchy bread and melted cheese (crispy on the top from broiling in the oven) give the open-faced sandwich a nice texture while the flavors of sriracha, Dijon and pickle give it a tangy, spicy bite. And the chickpeas, with their nutlike taste and buttery texture, are a good source of protein, fiber and iron and do a great job of filling out the sandwich. Overall I was very impressed with this recipe, as well as the website I found it on, The Gouda Life.
Spicy Chickpea Salad Melts
Makes 4 open-faced sandwiches
1 1/2 cups (approx. a small can) canned chickpeas
1 celery stalk, diced
1/4 red onions, diced very fine
2 tbsp Greek yogurt OR mayonnaise
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 large dill pickle, diced
1/2 clove garlic, minced or pressed
2 tbsp fresh minced basil
juice form 1/2 lemon (or a whole lemon if you like it tangy!)
1 tbsp sriracha (+/- depending on heat tolerance) OR 1/2 tsp (+/-) cayenne pepper
6 slices crusty multigrain bread
greens of your choice (I like torn kale)
1-2 cups shredded mozzarella (or fresh, torn mozzarella)
fresh ground pepper
Pour rinsed chickpeas into a flat, high sided dish, drizzle with a few glugs of olive oil and mash with a fork or potato masher until mixture starts to stick together. No need to be fussy, it’s even tastier when you get a whole chickpea in a bite.
Add in the celery, red onion, mayo, Dijon, pickle, garlic, basil, lemon juice, sriracha or cayenne and a good pinch of salt. Mix and taste for seasoning. Add more lemon, salt or cayenne if needed.
Preheat oven to 400F (204 C).
Slice your bread, lay on a baking sheet and top each with 1/4 of the mixture. It may seem like a lot but trust me. Just trust me. Top the chickpea salad layer with some greens, a layer of tomatoes and mozzarella. Sprinkle with pepper and pop in the oven for 10 minutes until golden. If necessary, turn the oven on to broil to brown the cheese in the last minute or two.