Green Garbanzo & Asparagus Salad

My local produce market sells plump little green garbanzos each spring, which is when I have spearmint and chives growing beautifully in my garden.   These two green herbs are bright accompaniments to a tangy yogurt dressing that lightly dresses blanched asparagus and green garbanzos.
Asparagus and Green garbanzo saladGreen garbanzos come one or two to a pod, and are easy to shell.  If they are new to you, think of cooking with them like fresh shelling peas.
Green garbanzosThey are packed with protein and fiber, and are creamy, nutty, fresh – and so delicious in this simple spring salad.   This recipe doubles easily, and works beautifully for a picnic lunch.  Enjoy!

Green Garbanzo & Asparagus Salad
(makes 4 servings)

1 bunch asparagus, ends trimmed, cut in bite size pieces
1 cup shelled fresh green garbanzos
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1 TB extra virgin olive oil
2 sprigs fresh spearmint leaves, minced
1 TB minced fresh chives (small clove garlic, crushed, may be substituted)
1/4 tsp. sea salt
a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, about 1 tsp.

Bring 1/2 inch water to the boil in a covered pan.  Drop in the asparagus pieces, cover with lid, and boil for one minute.  Add the shelled garbanzos to the pan and boil, covered, for one more minute.  Drain, then rinse briefly with cold water to cool.  Place in the fridge to cool completely – this will take about 10 minutes.

While the vegetables are cooling, make the dressing.  Combine the yogurt, oil, spearmint, chives, salt, and lemon juice in a blender and whirl for a few seconds.  If you don’t have a blender, just whisk the ingredients together in a bowl.  Dress the cooled vegetables with the dressing and enjoy.

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