Saturday, April 21, 2012

Fresh Garbanzo Beans

I am a newbie to the world of Winco but am realizing just how much money can be saved shopping there. I am also the biggest control freak ever and LOVE the fact that I can bag my groceries how I want them making me feel like somehow I save time putting them away because I can bag them with things they go with (I already admitted that I am a freak!) and can make sure that things don't get smashed. I also love their bulk section and the fresh herbs they have for really reasonable prices.
Just last week I went grocery shopping with one of my BFF's. We were shopping away and discussing some of the unique produce that Winco carries. Lucky for us, one of the Winco employees overheard our conversation and came over to talk to us about Tamarind. I cannot remember for the life of me what his name is so we can just call him Ron. Ron cut open the Tamarind and gave my friend and me and my kids a piece of it so we could taste it. He told us all about it and told us that people will often boil it and make it into a tea or they make candy out of it. It was sticky and a tad bit sour. It wasn't a flavor that any of us really loved but it was great to try something new.
We continued our shopping and Ron gave us a few more tricks and tips as we shopped. Ron was so knowledgable and really knew his produce. When we got over to the fresh herbs, we saw fresh garbanzo beans, something neither of us had ever seen before. We were intrigued.
We grabbed Ron and asked him about them, how they would normally be prepared, how you would eat them, etc. and his response was, "you are going to hate this!" I already loved his sarcastic personality from the minute we met him. He came over and popped open a few of the fresh garbanzo beans and let all of us try one. Delicious! I would say they taste very similar to a fresh snap pea. Ron said you could eat them just as they were for a snack, put them on salad, mix them in dip, saute them or steam them or even make fresh hummus. We were sold.
They are delicious. They are easy to pop open (they sort of just pop open at the seam when you squeeze the top) and I love snacking on them and so do my kids (winner, winner right there!). A new favorite around our house. I need to make another trip and stock up so that I can make a few new recipes with them before they are out of season. Fresh hummus is at the top of the list!

Here is the recipe I am going to try if you want to give it a whirl. It calls for Tahini which is a sesame seed paste that I am sure you can get at Whole Foods but in a pinch could use sesame seed oil although it won't give it quite the same taste. We love hummus so I am excited to try it.