Beans really are a kind of magical fruit, aren’t they?
Yes, magical in that way, silly goose! But since most of us aren’t 10 year old boys, we’re going to talk about the other ways that beans are magical today.
Like how they’re filling!
Like how they’re fibrous!
Like how they’re dee-licious!
And how they make a wonderful substitute for meat!
I prepare, and we consume, a lot of picadillo in this house. Mainly because picadillo, a sort of hash common in both Mexican and Cuban cuisines, is infinitely customizable and extremely easy to assemble and cook on a busy weeknight. I mean, why wouldn’t you?
This particular version of picadillo is perfect for those of you who are still enduring the final throes of winter: it’s seasoned with warm, warm spices that will perfume your kitchen and transport you to an evening fiesta alongside sandy shores with the sun setting in the background, the sounds of a steel drum band lighting up the twilight, and a dark-haired bartender offering you a colorful potent potable demurely shaded by a delicate drink umbrella.
Woah. Apparently I need to give my VCR tape of Cocktail a rest.
But you get my point.
This picadillo smells warm and inviting.
This picadillo is ready in less than 30 minutes.
This picadillo is vegan.
This picadillo is gluten free.
This picadillo is perfect for anyone and everyone, unless you have a deliciousness sensitivity, in which case, I can’t help you today.
Vegan Chickpea & Potato Picadillo
1 large Russet potato, skin intact, cut into 1/2″ pieces
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
2 large carrots, peeled, diced
1/4 c. pumpkin seeds
1- 15 oz. can of chickpeas, packing liquid retained
1 1/2 tsp. cumin, ground
1 tsp. ancho chile, ground
1 tsp. canela, ground (ground cinnamon may be substituted)
1 tsp. coriander, ground
1 tsp. garlic, ground
salt to taste
Place potato pieces into a large microwave-safe bowl and cover with water. Microwave on high heat for 5 minutes, drain and set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, heat oil in a large heavy-bottomed sauté pan over medium heat. Add onion and potato pieces and cook, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes. Add carrots, pumpkin seeds, and chickpeas along with their packing liquid. Stir well to combine, season with cumin, ancho, canela, coriander, garlic, and salt to taste, cover and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until liquid is completely absorbed and potato pieces and beans are tender. Remove cooked picadillo and serve immediately.
Note that I prefer to serve picadillo over rice with a dairy garnish (such as sour cream or crema agría) and sliced grape tomatoes, also for garnish.
YIELD: approximately 4 servings