Stuffed Pitas with Smashed Lemony Chickpeas, Arugula, Piquillo Pepper and Feta

"Special Sandwiches" by Tony Rosenfeld: The Washington Post. Seasonal vegetables and acidic ingredients add tang and vibrancy to simple sandwiches. Bold flavor and attention to detail can elevate a lunch favorite to dinner status. Sandwiches can be jazzy, worldly, fresh, inspired. Chickpeas ( a rather meaty legume) are mashed to retain a little of their meatiness. For the piquillo peppers, substitute 3/4 cup (1 jarred) roasted red pepper, drained, then cut into 1/2-inch dice. W-S Journal.

Yield: 4 servings
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  • 3 ounce(s) baby arugula (about 3 cups)
  • 5 ounce(s) feta cheese, crumbled
  • 3 tablespoon(s) olive oil, divided
  • Finely grated zest and freshly squeezed juice of 1/2 lemon (1 or 2 teaspoons zest, 1 or 2 tablespoons juice)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 15 1/2 ounce(s) (about 2 cups) canned no-salt-added chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 3 jarred piquillo peppers, drained, then cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 teaspoon(s) ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon(s) smoked Spanish paprika (sweet or hot pimenton de la Vera; optional)
  • 2 teaspoon(s) chopped thyme (from about 6 sprigs)
  • 4 pita breads


  1. 1. Toss the arugula with the feta, 1 tablespoon of the oil, the lemon juice (to taste) and salt and pepper to taste (about 1/2 teaspoon each) in a large bowl. Set aside for 5 minutes. 2. Meanwhile, combine the chickpeas and diced pepper in a medium bowl. Use the back of a large metal spoon to mash the chickpeas against the sides of the bowl, taking care not to totally pulverize or puree them. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, the lemon zest, cumin and the smoked Spanish paprika, if using. Taste, and season lightly with salt and pepper to taste (about 1/4 teaspoon each). Mash the chickpeas a bit more, then sprinkle the thyme over the mixture. 3. To assemble the sandwiches, cut off the top inch or so of each pita bread to create a pocket. (Eat those pieces if you're hungry, or save for croutons.) Spoon equal amounts of the chickpea mixture into each pita, then stuff with the arugula-feta mixture. 4. Serve immediately.
September 2011

This recipe is a personal recipe added by psfreeman and has not been tested or endorsed by MyRecipes.

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