Tea and Chickpea Cakes
I think it was my dad who helped nurture my love for tea, and although it took me years to become a â€˜real tea drinkerâ€™, I always had a revering fascination with tea.
My dad spoke wistfully of tea back when we couldnâ€™t afford it, and when we could, he ordered it from the special duty-free catalogue we received each year.
He called it the tea of the Czars; it may have been Kusmi tea, not that I remember. For all his faults, my dad was never a boastful man; he was humble to a point of self-deprecation, yet he talked about his tea with such pride and passion, I knew it was something special.
We had it on special occasions only, on its own or with nuts or savoury pastries â€“ thatâ€™s how he preferred his tea.
Iâ€™m not a daily tea drinker, just because I like a little ceremony to go with my tea; I do tea and chickpea cakes often, the savoury (chickpea cakes) and soothing (tea) pairing makes me a little nostalgic and comforted.
The cakes are a little spicy, they melt in your mouth and the tea is cooling, itâ€™s a deliciously unique and complimenting combination.
These chickpea cakes are my favourite teatime snack; the thing I love most about them is their versatility; an assortment of vegetables can be baked into them â€“ onions, carrots, peas (pictured), cauliflower, bell pepper, cabbage, potatoesâ€¦ etc and it always turns out wonderful.
Itâ€™s best enjoyed right out of the oven, when itâ€™s still hot and crispy on the outside, and itâ€™s perfect for tea anytime.
Chickpea Cakes with Peas
- 2 cups chickpea flour (garbanzo flour/gram flour /besan)
- 1/2 small onion, chopped finely
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 1 tablespoon dried chives
- 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
- Pinch of turmeric, (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (or more or less to taste)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 â€“ 1 cup water or more
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. grease or line muffin tins with baking cups (or use sturdy baking cups on a baking sheet)
- In a large bowl, mix chickpea flour, onions, peas, chives, pepper flakes, turmeric, salt and baking powder
- Add olive oil, mix and add water 1/4 cup at a time, mix to create a thick smooth batter (thicker pancake consistency)
- Spoon batter to fill muffin tins or baking cups up to 3/4 full
- Bake for 20 â€“ 25 minutes or until the cakes turn golden brown
- Let them cool on tray for a few minutes before transferring them to serving plate
- Serve with tea and a side of chutney, ketchup or your favourite dip