Marinated Celery Chickpea Salad

Mom and I always fight about celery.  Mom likes celery in everything, and I don’t think celery should go in anything.  Well I don’t mind it in a few things, but celery has quite a strong flavor so it can steal the show if it’s just an ingredient in a salad.  So when I saw this salad, I knew it was the perfect recipe to save to make for Mom.  This is a wonderful summer salad.  It’s easy, doesn’t require any heating, you can make it ahead of time, and the celery is the star of the show with a very refreshing, cool, crunch.  Chickpeas add some protein and add a little creaminess to the crunchy celery.

Make sure you buy celery that comes with leaves, you’ll mix those in just before serving.  This recipe calls for grape tomatoes, which are convenient to get year-round.  However, as heirloom tomatoes and beefsteak tomatoes are starting to become available, I think this salad would be awesome served over big slices of perfect summer tomatoes.

How do you feel about celery?  What’s your favorite way to serve summer tomatoes?Marinated Celery and Chickpea Salad (A Seat at the Table)

Marinated Celery Chickpea Salad

Serves 8

Adapted from NYTimes

  • 6 Tbsp Champagne vinegar (or sherry vinegar)
  • 2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp maple syrup (or honey)
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 (15oz) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 celery head, trimmed (reserving the leaves), cut stalks at a diagonal
  • 3 large scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup basil, julienned
  • Parmesan, shaved over top (to taste)

In a measuring cup, whisk together the vinegar, mustard, and maple syrup.  Stream in the olive oil while mixing well to emulsify the dressing.  Add the smashed garlic to the dressing and season with salt and pepper.  Let sit for at least 30 minutes for the garlic to infuse the dressing.

In a large bowl, combine the chickpeas, celery stalks, and scallions.  Mix the salad with the dressing and refrigerate for at least two hours or overnight.  When ready to eat, remove the garlic cloves from the salad.  Chop the celery leaves, and mix them in with the salad.  Add the tomatoes and basil and top with shaved parmesan.  Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

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