• Easy vegetarian and vegan recipes – spinach & chickpea pasties

Here’s an easy recipe for you that is perfect for vegetarians and vegans (not that you will feel in the slightest bit deprived if you are a meat eater).

I’ve been playing around with vegan recipes a bit over the past few weeks and this recipe (in a slightly different form), was given to me by English friends Nettie and David. I’ve fiddled around with it a bit and made a few changes including the addition of cumin. It makes a lovely lunch served with  baby new potatoes and some slow roasted tomatoes.

You will need:

  • 250g plain flour
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • water to bind
  • Fresh spinach (around half a kilo) or you can use frozen spinach too
  • 1 can of chickpeas
  • One large onion finely chopped
  • Couple of cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • Olive oil
  • The rind of a lemon and some lemon juice
  • A teaspoon of ground cumin
  • Salt & pepper

First of all make your pastry.  Put the flour in a bowl, add the olive oil and use cold water to bring together to a softish dough.  Put in the fridge to rest while you make the filling.

Rinse the spinach and put it in a colander – pour a kettle of boiling water over it to wilt it, rinse with cold water, squeeze out the excess and put to one side.  In a frying pan, add a little olive oil, fry the chopped onion until translucent and then add the garlic and cook for a couple of minutes.  Add the cooked onion and garlic to the wilted spinach, add the chickpeas (crush some and leave some whole), lemon rind, ground cumin, salt, pepper and a good lug of olive oil. Taste and adjust your seasoning if necessary.

Roll out your olive oil pastry into a large circle (get it as thin as you can).  Put the filling on one half, fold over the pastry, damp the edge and crimp it around as you would for a Cornish pasty.  Place on a baking tray, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and then – wait for it – flood, yes flood the tray with olive oil.  Don’t be frightened to add quite a lot.  As the pasty cooks it absorbs the oil.  The quality of the oil you use will make a difference here.  Very cheap oil can be bitter and you will taste it so use a decent one if you can as it makes all the difference.

Serve warm or at room temperature, with wedges of lemon to squeeze over.