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A Simple Greek Chickpea Dish from a New, Healthful Cookbook by PBS Host Diane Kochilas

Daniel Hautzinger
A blue plate of chickpea stew with vegetables and a sprig of rosemary
Diane Kochilas' Chickpea Stew with Honey-Roasted Cauliflower and Root Vegetables. Credit: Vasilis Stenos

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Residents of the Greek island Ikaria are ten times more likely to live to 100 years old than Americans, making it one of the world's "blue zones," isolated areas where populations live much longer than typically expected. The PBS host and cookbook author Diane Kochilas spends almost half of every year on the island, where her family has roots, running a cooking school out of her kitchen and garden that informs her PBS cooking show My Greek Table with Diane Kochilas, which airs on WTTW and is available to stream via the PBS app. Now she has turned the lessons of an Ikarian diet into a healthful cookbook The Ikaria Way: 100 Delicious Plant-Based Recipes Inspired by My Homeland, the Greek Island of Longevity. The recipes in it, like the simple chickpea stew below, aren't guaranteed to make you live longer – but they certainly can't hurt! 

Chickpea Stew with Honey-Roasted Cauliflower and Root Vegetables

I embraced the whole sheet-pan craze when my son was still in high school and I discovered it to be such an easy way to cook up so many different things with minimal fuss. Chickpeas are a family favorite in our home. The smoky, spicy-sweet flavors of the vegetables are a delicious addition to the earthy flavor of the chickpeas. Orange is one of the ingredients in my secret arsenal of flavor enhancers, up there with leman zest and a few other ingredients.


For the sheet-pan vegetables:
Fresh strained juice of 1 orange
1/2 cup extra-virgin Greek olive oil
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon Greek pine honey, or more to taste
2 heaping teaspoons ground cumin
1 pinch freshly grated nutmeg
1 heaping teaspoon turmeric powder
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne or hot paprika, or more to taste
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 medium head cauliflower, trimmed and cut into small florets
2 carrots, pared, halved lengthwise, and cut into 2-inch pieces
2 large red onions, peeled and quartered

For the chickpeas:
2 tablespoons extra-virgin Greek olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 large red or yellow onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
4 cups cooked chickpeas (good-quality canned are fine), rinsed and drained
1 heaping tablespoon tomato paste
1 small seedless orange, preferably organic, cut into 4 wedges
2 fresh rosemary sprigs
2 to 4 cups hot vegetable broth or water, or more as needed
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar


1. Preheat the over to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the orange juice, olive oil, mustard, honey, and all the spices including the salt and pepper. Toss the vegetables in this mixture to coat evenly. 

2. Spread the vegetables in one layer onto the sheet pan. Roast until tender and lightly charred, about 20 minutes, removing vegetables as they cook to avoid burning them. Set aside to cool and then cut into smaller pieces, a little larger than the chickpeas.

3. In the meantime, prepare the chickpeas. Heat the olive oil in a large wide pot and sauté the onion until translucent. Stir in the garlic. Add the chickpeas and stir. Stir in the tomato paste. Squeeze the orange wedges into the chickpeas to get out their juice and add the wedges, peel and all, to the pot. Add the rosemary and 2 cups of the hot broth or water. Season to taste with salt and pepper, partially cover the pot, and cook the chickpeas on low for the flavors to meld, about 15 or 20 minutes. If you want the mixture to be thick and creamy, you can mash a handful of chickpeas against the side of the pot.

4. Add the root vegetables to chickpeas, heat all together for about 5 minutes, stir in the balsamic vinegar, and serve.