Spanish Chopped Salad

We’ve been cleaning house. Big time. It’s a stereotypical January thing to do, I guess, but this year I’m being ruthless about it. I literally pulled everything out of every cabinet in our kitchen last weekend, reduced the contents to just the items we (a) use frequently or (b) want to use more often, and as for the rest, I’m either storing it (ice cream maker), gifting it (extra glassware), or giving it away (odds and ends). Besides the new luxury of uncrowded, well-organized cabinets and drawers, I finally carved out a place for all my cookbooks so they’re within easy reach. The result: Falling in love with new recipes from books I’ve owned for ages but rarely used, like this Spanish Chopped Salad from It’s All Good. The ingredients are simple but important for the full sweet, smoky flavor–hunt down the piquillo peppers and make sure to use smoked paprika, not the regular kind.

Spanish Chopped Salad

2 cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 teaspoon of smoked paprika
A pinch of coarse sea salt
1 head of red-leaf lettuce, torn
2 scallions, finely sliced
4 jarred roasted Spanish piquillo peppers, thinly sliced
2 5-ounce cans of good-quality tuna packed in olive oil, oil drained but saved
1 tablespoon of parsley, chopped
1 avocado, sliced

For the dressing
2 tablespoons of raw honey
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons of oil from the cans of tuna
1/4 cup of olive oil
Coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 425F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a bowl, toss the chickpeas with the olive oil and paprika. Spread the chickpeas evenly on the prepared baking sheet, sprinkle with salt, and roast 20-30 minutes. They should be dark brown and crunchy. To make the dressing, combine the honey, vinegar, and tuna oil in a small food processor and blend to combine. Add the olive oil and blend again. Season with the salt and pepper. To serve, pile lettuce onto plates, then top with the tuna, chickpeas, peppers, and scallions. Spoon a bit of dressing over the salad. Finish with avocado slices and parsley.

Store the extra dressing in a small jar in the fridge and keep the extra toppings in individual containers for an easy workday lunch.

Recipe adapted from It’s All Good

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