The other night, Ravi was craving Indian, but I wanted something a bit lighter. So to go along with our channa masala (chickpea stew), I came up with this version of a chopped salad.
It's bright and fresh, but also keeps things grounded with toasted cumin and coriander seeds. I love how the crisp vegetables, lime juice, and herbs play against the flavors and texture of hearty Indian curries.
This salad would also make a great light lunch. Just add a can of drained chickpeas to boost the protein (maybe a diced avocado too) and you're set.
Mumbai Chopped Salad
1 English cucumber, chopped
1 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered + seeded
1/3 cup red onion, finely diced
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup fresh mint, chopped
1/2 serrano pepper, finely minced
1/3 cup pomegranate seeds
1 tsp. coriander seeds
1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
3-4 Tbs. fresh lime juice (1-2 limes)
1 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. sea salt
8-10 grinds fresh black pepper
1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 avocado, diced
In a small dry skillet, toast coriander and cumin seeds over medium heat until fragrant. Crush with a mortar and pestle or blend in a spice grinder. I prefer a coarser texture. If you don't have whole seeds, you can use the pre-ground spices, but do not toast them.
Put all ingredients into a large bowl (reserving 1 Tbs. lime juice) and toss to combine. Let sit 10-15 minutes before serving for flavors to meld. Taste for seasoning and adjust by adding more lime juice, salt, pepper, etc.
Note: For a boost of protein or to stretch the salad, you could add one 15-ounce can of drained and rinsed chickpeas. This makes a wonderful light lunch.
Recipe adapted from Cooking Light.