Tonight is THE NIGHT in Vancouver: it’s Canucks do-or-die against the the Chicago Blackhawks. When hockey season hits, Vancouver transforms into the ultimate hockey city. Particularly if we make the playoffs, everybody and their moms are suddenly die-hard fans and only Canucks-related status updates are allowed on facebook. If you live downtown, the screaming and honking does not die down until dawn breaks if we win a game.
Then, there’s me. I don’t watch hockey and I don’t pretend to and jump on the bandwagon during the playoffs. I do, however, support them and their fans through food. Needless to say, the most unhealthy foods to accompany senseless drinking emerge at game time so I step up to the challenge of preparing delicious and healthy munchies that I can serve and enjoy without guilt.
Honey Glazed Nam-Yu Chicken in drumstick and wing form is a definite winner. My other surprising success? This curry chickpea dip served with vegetable sticks. I kid you not. This beats out nachos by a long shot… just like how we’ll beat the Blackhawks tonight!
1 tbs cumin seeds
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbs ginger, minced
2 shallots, minced
3 tbs curry powder
1 large can of whole chickpeas (approx. 550 mL), drained and rinsed
1.5 cup of plain yogurt* or 2 individual-size containers
1 lemon, zest and juice
large handful of green onions or chives, chopped finely
1/4 cup olive oil (replace with water for low-fat version)
Toast cumin seeds in a dry pan over medium heat. When it smells aromatic and toasty, add enough oil to coat the pan and add the next 4 ingredients. Stir and heat through until the curry powder is very fragrant.
Using a hand blender, blend chickpeas, oil, and the spice mixture until quite smooth. Stir in the lemon zest and juice, green onions, and yogurt. Season heavily with s&p.
Vegetables: anything refreshing and sweet.
– Jicama is the star here. It’s a crispy, sweet, juicy root vegetable reminiscent of a cross between pear and water chestnut. I also used Japanese cucumber and colored bell peppers but be creative!
– Toasted flat bread or bread sticks
– Baked sweet-potato fries (toss in oil, s&p, 15 min @ 350°F)
– Baked tortilla chips (brush with oil, s&p, 8 min @ 350°F)
* yogurt: best to drain for 15-20 min. Low fat/ fat free yogurt is fine here but they do not drain well.