• 2 15-ounce cans chickpeas, drained and well rinsed

  • 1 cup finely diced bell peppers, assorted colors

  • 1/2 cup thin sliced Persian cucumber (these are the small ones,) do not peel

  • 1/2 cup small mozzarella pearls

  • 1/2 cup halved or quartered cherry tomatoes, assorted colors

  • 1/3 cup quartered small radishes

  • 1/3 cup diced black olives

  • 1/4 cup finely minced red onion

  • fresh cracked black pepper

  • pesto dressing (this will make more than you need, use the rest on pasta!)

  • 2 large handfuls fresh basil leaves and part of the stems

  • 1 small garlic clove, smashed and peel removed

  • juice of 1/2 lemon

  • a good grating of fresh Parmesan (as much or as little as you like)

  • 1/4 cup olive oil, give or take

  • salt to taste

  • garnish

  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts (toast in a little olive oil in a skillet for several minutes, stirring constantly until they turn nutty brown.)

  • lemon wedges


  1. Put the drained, rinsed, and dried chickpeas in a large salad bowl along with the rest of the salad ingredients.

  2. To make the pesto dressing, process the basil, garlic, and lemon briefly until it breaks down into a thick paste. Add the cheese and enough olive oil to make a loose pourable consistency. Add salt to taste, and more cheese, and/or lemon if you like.

  3. Toss the salad with just enough pesto to thoroughly coat everything. Serve topped with the toasted pine nuts, a good grinding of fresh cracked pepper, and accompanied by a couple of lemon wedges.