chickpea and potato picadillo


I took Spanish in college, enough to realize that I’m terrible at speaking Spanish. So I’m not quite sure how to pronounce this…I’m guessing pee-ka-dee-yo.

Po-tay-toe. Ay-und.

I found this Latin American recipe on a site called the vegetarian times. I’m a fan of anything that involves chopping stuff up and cooking it in a big pot/pan for an indeterminate amount of time. Seems foolproof. And I felt like I needed a little redemption after burning the shit out of that bread.

Today my aspirational self (and chef) was a little more in line with reality. Despite sleeping through a 7:30 a.m. phone call informing me that a spot had opened up for me to sea kayak today with a meetup group, and despite waking up to a text from the aforementioned psychic saying “Hello Sorry I can NOT work with you,” I had a pretty nice day. The weather was perfect for an afternoon run followed by a trip to Kill-Me-Now Kroger and some apartment cleanup (idiot cat puked, twice. It is a useless and disgusting thing).


This is entirely unrelated, but there is a woman who lives a couple of houses down from me who talks louder than anyone should ever talk, and somehow she’s always outside, talking. Her tone is exactly like those people you hear in supermarkets talking louder and slower to foreigners who can’t understand English. I want to do something abrupt like light my desk on fire and push it off the balcony. Anything to make her shut up for a second.

OK, back to the topic of this post. Killing this woman. I mean, sorry—I can’t hear myself think. Vegetarian picadillo.

Here’s what you need:

A fucking blowtorch

• 2 medium-sized Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
• 3 tbsp. olive oil
• 1 tbsp. ground cumin
• 1 15-oz. can chickpeas, drained
• 1/3 cup dark raisins (dark raisins, as in, not Craisins? That’s what I assumed)
• 1 tsp. dried Mexican oregano (so…I just had regular oregano)
• 1 15-oz. can diced tomatoes (I used fire roasted, and they worked well)
• 1 tbsp. red wine vinegar
• 1/8 tsp. ground cloves (oooh, I love the way these smell!)
• 1 c chopped green onions (equivalent to a little bundle you buy at the supermarket)

Put the potato chunks in a medium-sized bowl, fill it 1/3 with water, cover and microwave. This will start to cook them through and save time. Microwave for about 4-5 minutes.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat (large, meaning, larger than the one you see in my picture—I had to stir carefully to avoid spillage) and add the cumin. Then add in the raisins, oregano, chickpeas and potatoes. Saute for a few minutes, then add in the red wine vinegar, cloves and canned tomatoes with juice. Bring to a simmer for 10-15 minutes. During the last couple of minutes, add in the green onions (I didn’t end up using all of mine. Additionally, I wished I had had more raisins. This might just be personal preference).

I served mine with brown rice and corn tortillas. I had a few friends over to eat, drink wine and play Cards Against Humanity, aka the best game on the planet (if you’re a horrible person…which, ahem, I’m trying not to be. Sometimes).


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