Cooking With TechyDad: Marinated Greek Chickpeas

As I’ve mentioned before, there’s a Greek restaurant near my parents’ house that had the best chickpeas.  They were marinated in olive oil with onions and spices.  I’ve long wanted to get the recipe or duplicate it, but one ingredient always eluded me.  The last time we were there, though, the chickpeas tasted off.  We suddenly realized the missing ingredient: lemon.

During a Pampered Chef party at CutestKidEver’s house, we found a Greek rub that seemed to contain just the spices we needed.  Score!


So here’s my recreation attempt.  First, the ingredients:


That would be chickpeas (2 cans), a small onion, the Greek rub and some olive oil.  Now, we we chop up the onion.


Drain the chickpeas and pour them into a container.


Now add the chopped onions.


And the Greek rub and the olive oil.


Now mix and marinate for a day or so.


In the end, this was good, but there’s still more to go before I’ve perfected it.  First of all, refrigerating it only leads to the oil congealing.  Also, the onion taste was way too strong.  I might try a milder onion next time or perhaps sautéing it slightly to soften it up and remove some of the strong flavor.  I might also make smaller batches so that we don’t have a huge container of a slightly off version.  All in all, though, this was a decent first try.

(By the way, this was my first post composed using Windows Live Writer. I’m just getting used to it, but so far I love it!)

Aloha Friday: Obtaining Recipes From Restaurants

By my parents’ house, there is a Greek restaurant. I used to order from them all the time. They would even recognize me, not by my voice, but by my phoned in order of “Spanikopita, side of rice pilaf and side of chickpeas to go” as I drove home from work. I’ve tried (and failed) to find spanikopita as good by me. Of course, any trip to my parents comes with two conditions, the first of which is that we eat at the Greek restaurant. (The second is stopping by Trader Joe’s.)

Despite my love of their spanikopita (aka spinach pie), there’s another dish that I’d love the recipe for more. Their chickpeas. When you sit down for dinner, they’ll place a bowl of these in front of you with some pita bread. My taste buds are watering just thinking of them. The chickpeas are marinated with chopped up onions in oil. My best guess is that it is olive oil with some mystery mixture of spices. (And now my nose just kicked in as I remembered their scent.) I would eat these chickpeas every day if I had the chance.

Every time I go, I tell myself that I should ask for the recipe so I can try to duplicate this dish. Every time, I either chicken out or ask so meekly that it is all too easy for them to decline.

My Aloha Friday question for today is: Have you ever asked a restaurant for the recipe to a dish that you loved? Were you ever successful if obtaining it?

Thanks to Kailani at An Island Life for starting this fun for Friday. Please be sure to head over to her blog to say hello and sign the MckLinky there if you are participating.

Aloha Friday by Kailani at An Island Life

Aloha #44

Aloha Friday: Recreating #DisneySMMoms Recipes

While we were at Disney Social Media Moms, we were included in a dinner along with 400 volunteers. At the time, we thought that the food that we ate was part of a Robert Irvine/Dinner Impossible challenge. Sadly, it turned out not to be the case. The volunteers got Irvine’s food and we “just” got Disney food. I say “just” because the food was exceptional (as is par for the course at Disney). In fact, having seen what Robert Irvine created, I’m happier with what we were served. Still, it would have been cool to have been part of a Dinner Impossible challenge.

One dessert in particular stood out. It was a warm brownie torte that tasted like it was uncooked warm brownie batter (and I mean that in the best possible way). Here’s a photo, although Disney Food Blog has a better one.


We had gotten a couple plates of these and when the boys (who by this point in the night were exhausted) refused it, I ate the second plate. For some reason, my chocolate-brownie-lust overpowered my brain and I only realized too late that I had eaten B’s plate! I vowed to recreate the dish as soon as I saw how it was made on Dinner Impossible. Of course, once the episode aired, it became apparent that this dish wasn’t part of the show. I’m on my own now in recreating it, though I have a few ideas.

My Aloha Friday question for this week is: Have you ever recreated a dish you’ve eaten out somewhere? If so, how successful were you? If you haven’t, is there a particular dish that you’d love to be able to recreate?

Oh, and if anyone has any pointers for recreating this, I’d be happy to hear them.

Thanks to Kailani at An Island Life for starting this fun for Friday. Please be sure to head over to her blog to say hello and sign the MckLinky there if you are participating.

Aloha Friday by Kailani at An Island Life

Aloha #41

Cooking With TechyDad: Sweet Potato Fries and Roasted Veggies

One of the simple things I love doing is roasting vegetetables. Roasting them brings out all sorts of wonderful flavors and is so easy to do. The basic rundown is: Slice veggies, toss in a little extra virgin olive oil, toss in salt and pepper, place on a cookie sheet in the oven until soft and delicious. I made some of these to go with dinner yesterday and figured I’d take some photos to share the details of my procedures.

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Cooking With TechyDad: Homemade Applesauce and Crispy Apple Skins

Today’s Cooking With TechyDad is a two for one deal. You might recall a few months back when we went apple picking and came home with a ton of apples. Well, they didn’t go to waste. (For the most part. A few wound up getting tossed when they went bad.) I made, among other things, homemade applesauce and crispy apple skins.

Let’s start with the apple sauce. First, gather your ingredients. Apples, sugar and cinnamon.


Next, peel and chop your apples. Don’t discard those skins, though. We’re going to use them later. Put the chopped apples in a slow cooker.


Add in a cup of sugar, a teaspoon or two of cinnamon, and a cup of water.

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Next, cover and cook on low for 8 hours.


When you’re done, enjoy warm or cold, by itself or over ice cream. Oh and the juices released make a wonderful drink all on their own!

Now on to those apple skins. Cover a baking tray with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray. Place the skins on the tray and spray them with cooking spray.

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Top all of this with some cinnamon sugar. (If you don’t have any, just mix your own. It’s what I do. The container’s just from a one time cinnamon sugar purchase I made years back.)

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Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for about 30-40 minutes until the skins get crispy. You’ll want to flip them over every few minutes to keep them from burning.


When you’re done, let them cool and then enjoy!

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