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March 16, 2012 / lanceblair

Warm Chick Pea and Cherry Salad

This dish is so satisfyingly meaty (despite being vegetarian) and savory that I’d rather call it an App. or a Side – or a meal on its own. Pair this alongside the Wild Rice and Quinoa from fellow (T)radder threefresheggs, and I think I’d have an all-time fave dish.

The Warm Chick Pea and Cherry Salad is the work of chef Eric Ottensmeyer from Leon’s Full Service in  Decatur, Georgia. Eric shared his recipe with the Atlanta Journal and Constitution and you can read the recipe and background on it here.  When I asked the very helpful, friendly,  and attentive staff they suggested that the secret to this salad is the complex and involved processing of the chick peas. So, in other words, it’s a Leon’s State Secret that can only be found on the premises. Twist my arm! Leon’s has a wonderful menu and one of the best bartenders in Atlanta, so I’ll be back. 

Yes, I absolutely loved this “salad” but would recommend trying these modifications that differ from Chef Ottensmeyer for fun…to make it less savory and more sweet:

Go easy on the kosher salt (of course)

Double the Basil

Double the Cherries

Cut the Chick Peas down to three cups.

Stick a Drinks Umbrella (pink or violet) and a French flag in either end of it. NO! DO NOT DO THIS!!! PLEASE!!! Okay, it’s your call…

I’ll give this modified version a whirl and report back to all y’all in the (T)rad fam…with pictures, of course!




Leave a Comment
  1. threefresheggs / Mar 16 2012 11:24 pm

    That is right up my alley! Mental. I am doing it tomorrow; I still have some quinoa salad left over from Wednesday’s picnic! xxx!

  2. lanceblair / Mar 16 2012 11:45 pm

    Cool! Good luck with it and I look forward to hearing how it all goes together. I don’t know what I’m going to do now that I know how good Leon’s is, and that it’s a five minute walk from my house. I was intentionally avoiding it in a way so I wouldn’t be tempted!

  3. ivalleria / Mar 17 2012 2:20 am

    Y’ll are funny! I am using the drink umbrella!

    • threefresheggs / Mar 17 2012 2:33 am

      Straight up, or with a chickpea?

  4. threefresheggs / Mar 17 2012 1:00 pm

    Of course, I am out of cherries, don’t have any provolone, and never have basil on hand (shocking!), so probably this will require a little planning…

  5. lanceblair / Mar 17 2012 2:23 pm

    Och, nae probs…if you are willing to take ivalleria’s sage (not basil) advice and claim your salad in the name of France, you can substitute with red grapes, cheddar, and romaine. Tiny French Flags = Instant Haute Cuisine. I bring them with me chaque fois que je mange à Le Château Blanc.

  6. ivalleria / Mar 17 2012 11:50 pm

    I wanted to make this today too, but couldn’t get it together to brave Fairway on the weekend. And discovered to my disappointment that there’s no chick peas from Cayuga at the farmers market. we must not have the climate to grow them locally.

  7. ivalleria / Mar 19 2012 12:18 am

    Ok! $12 of specialty ingredients later, I made it! And it is truly delicious. Decadent and restauranty but yum. cherries were made to go with provolone!

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