lemon, parmesan & chickpea cabbage salad

After pickling prunes and boiling cookies, sometimes you just want something normal. A meal that feels like home. Cabbage is one of my favorite kitchen workhorses and it shouldn’t be relegated to dreary winter days or forgotten about until the fridge is running on empty. Cabbage can be a hit of sunshine and a welcoming crunch. Let it be your summertime companion!

Cabbage is great because it only needs a little bit of something to turn it into wow. When I read Molly’s book, I did a double take when it came to Brandon’s cabbage salad. One evening when the golden hour sunshine flooded into our apartment, I knew this would make the ideal dinner salad. It was simple, nothing more than lemon juice, garlic, Parmesan and good olive oil and a little seasoning. But when I started adding the shredded cabbage leaves to the bowl, I figured why not add in a bit of protein? So I threw in a can of drained chickpeas and our dinner salad was born. With a buttered Portuguese roll from our local market, this salad was perfect. I think I will make this meal my new best friend.

I’m not one to showcase my kitchen. It’s a tiny galley kitchen from 1982 with a ridiculously small amount of usable counter space (see above? That’s it!), and it’s darker than your most private thoughts. However, in the summer, around 7pm when the light is just right, the magic hour reaches all the way back into our little kitchen. I’m not going to go all Pioneer Woman on you, but figured you might want to see where all the magic happens.

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40 comments to “lemon, parmesan & chickpea cabbage salad”

  1. 1
    onalobsterplacemat   May 27, 2009 at 10:10 am

    I think cabbage is more in style now than ever. Thanks for writing about it. I have molly’s book – and will definitely give this a try.

  2. 2
    Katerina   May 27, 2009 at 10:13 am

    This is the problem I find with fabulous salads, if they have no protein I can’t consider it a meal. Then you have to make something else. This looks delicious AND complete.

  3. 3
    Adrienne   May 27, 2009 at 10:22 am

    Oooh, I like the way you think. Chickpeas make EVERYTHING better, and this looks great.

    And to answer an earlier query you posed on my blog, no, I don’t think we’ll make it to Vancouver :( I would loooove to go, but SOMEONE doesn’t have a passport. Something about Kansas not issuing birth certificates, but I think if he did a little research he could get one… Anyway, I already have a feeling I’m going to love the Pac NW, so let me go out on a limb and say maybe next time!

  4. 4
    Dana   May 27, 2009 at 10:28 am

    I love that top photo. Beautifully composed. And chickpeas are on my all-time favorite food list. I am so impressed that you turn such lovely food out of such a small kitchen!

  5. 5
    Jabba   May 27, 2009 at 12:48 pm

    I’m also glad you posted a picture of your quaint kitchen – so nice to see such gorgeous food coming out of a wee kitchen!
    We love big salads that will serve as a main course, this one will definitely be tried.

  6. 6
    Anne   May 27, 2009 at 2:12 pm

    That looks delicious! Thanks for the recipe. The addition of the chickpeas as protein is a great idea :)

  7. 7
    becka   May 27, 2009 at 5:00 pm

    You guys have tiles?? Did you do them yourselves? I love them!

    Also, this looks so, so delicious!

  8. 8
    The Leftoverist   May 27, 2009 at 5:44 pm

    I love cabbage, too. Underappreciated, underused, so cheap and crunchy.

  9. 9
    Anonymous   May 27, 2009 at 5:53 pm

    I feel your pain – I endured many, many (did I mention many?) years of no counter space – but, like you, still managed to produce lots of delectable delights. I now have counters – hallelujah! – and wish that for you as well!! Happy cooking and many returns ;0)

    ps – i love cabbage

  10. 10
    Cayla   May 27, 2009 at 7:55 pm

    Looks delicious! And so simple too!

  11. 11
    kickpleat   May 27, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    onalobsterplacemat, I think I have to agree with you on that. But I’ve been a cabbage fan since before I was born (being half Eastern European peasant and all!)

    Katerina, it is both those thing + simple too!

    Have fun in my favorite city, Adrienne! Next time you’ll have to swing up here for a visit.

    Thanks Dana. I manage quite nicely I think :)

    Glad to hear, Jabba that you don’t mind seeing my tiny squalid kitchen!

    Anne, I think so too.

    Becka, the tiles came with the place. Yours doesn’t? I guess I’ll have some new kitchen snooping to do!

    Agreed, the Leftoverist!

    Thanks for the future good fortunes! I hope for miles of counter space in the future :)

    Thanks Cayla!

  12. 12
    eatme_delicious   May 27, 2009 at 10:06 pm

    Haha I love how you describe the amount of light in your kitchen! My kitchen is in the back of our apartment and really never gets any light it seems. Yum to your salad! Sounds like a perfect summertime meal.

  13. 13
    CookiePie   May 28, 2009 at 7:14 am

    Yum – that looks so healthy and delicious!

  14. 14
    Hayley   May 28, 2009 at 7:25 am

    This sounds so simple and delicious. Thanks for the recipe!

  15. 15
    AMR   May 28, 2009 at 1:51 pm

    I have a small galley kitchen too (c. 1934) with about the same amount of counter space…but mine is a wood butcher block that I had cut to fit my stove (a curious 1950s General Motors Deluxe mini-model that has an oven that heats to kiln-like). That block gets shifted to atop my sink when I'm using the stove/kiln. It's like I'm in a submarine.
    That you create all that you do in there – wah! Nice.
    Best wishes & thanks for all the inspiration, A X

  16. 16
    Bijoux   May 28, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    Lack of kitchen counter space is also an issue in my kitchen which is why I had to get me a kitchen island from Ikea. I still find that I prefer doing a lot of my food prep near the sink and stove and not on the other side of the room where the island is located. I hope we both have functional kitchens in our near future. I’ve been on a coleslaw kick for the past few weeks and this dish sounds like a great way to eat it.

  17. 17
    spicygranola   May 28, 2009 at 7:25 pm

    yummy. I love cabbage and chick peas!

  18. 18
    Maggie   May 28, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    Yum…this sounds like the perfect meal for me…can’t convince a certain guy around here to eat cabbage but now I’m really craving this salad! I bet it would be nice with a little fennel and endive thrown in too, for sweet/bitter…

  19. 19
    Beth R+V   May 29, 2009 at 6:54 am

    “I’m not going to go all Pioneer Woman on you”. Ha! Love it. PS – I tried your no bake cookie and posted it on my blog, if you want to check it out. yum yum. Cheers!

  20. 20
    The Skirt   May 29, 2009 at 9:13 am

    I’ve been a lurker on your site for years. And was going to stay that way, but that reference to Pioneer Woman was LOL funny. That woman has an ego bigger than the great outdoors. I’m still laughing. Love your blog

  21. 21
    Sarena Shasteen   May 29, 2009 at 4:11 pm

    This is my kind of salad! I love cabbage and chickpeas! What a great summertime salad!

  22. 22
    Wheeler's Crew   May 30, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    Mmm cabbage and chickpeas, what could be better? Looks great, nice post.

  23. 23
    Dawn   May 30, 2009 at 2:48 pm

    goodness I thought my 50 s.f. kitchen was small…I don’t feel so bad now.
    but we always manage to make it work don’t we?
    I am a HUGE lover of slaw salads and get tired of the same old either vinegar or mayo. so, I must experiment with this one; thankful you put chickpeas in there.

  24. 24
    Aimée   May 30, 2009 at 5:26 pm

    Loved the peek into your kitchen–thanks! I don’t know how you manage to turn out all the sandwiches for everybody in such a small space, but obviously you’ve figured out how to make it work.

  25. 25
    Niki Storr   May 31, 2009 at 12:38 pm

    Having just made this salad, I can vouch for it's deliciousness. Lemon, garlic, oil, & parm: it's like the peasant caesar salad.

    Thanks for another great recipe!

  26. 26
    Bellini Valli   June 1, 2009 at 7:07 pm

    This is amazingly simple as well as delicious.

  27. 27
    Chris!   June 1, 2009 at 8:32 pm

    Made this tonight, and it was fannntastic. I had totally forgotten that cabbage was awesome. I also zested the lemon and threw some dill in there too. Great stuff.

  28. 28
    Marta   June 2, 2009 at 12:50 pm

    aww your kitchen is cute! small but quaint! This salad looks great to bring to a picnic or a BBQ party!
    I arrived here following your comment at Seven Spoons: I can’t believe you made your wedding cupcakes, that’s so sweet!!!! And coconut is also my favourite :)

  29. 29
    Shannalee   June 2, 2009 at 3:20 pm

    This looks lovely, and, for the record, the line about your kitchen being darker than your darkest thoughts? Love it.

  30. 30
    Erin   June 2, 2009 at 9:40 pm

    This looks so easy and tasty! Perfect for summer.

  31. 31
    kickpleat   June 3, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    Our kitchen is also at the back too, eatme! One day better kitchens for us all!!

    Cookiepie, indeed!

    Yes, Hayley, it's very simple and so good. A perfect summer supper.

    AMR love your fix-arounds for your kitchen! Very cool.

    Bijoux, I thought that with a new house you'd have a huge kitchen! Hope you find a good solution soon…or just knock down a wall or two! haha.

    spicygranola, me too :)

    Maggie, please be my guest! Fennel & endive would be great.

    Thanks Beth & Skirt! Yeah, I'm not a fan of a hundred photos of the making of a recipe, but it was no dig!

    Sareena, perfect for summers.

    Thanks Wheelers!

    Dawn, yup, I do manage to make it work…as do you, definitely.

    Ah, Aimee, you are always good for a laugh!!

    Niki, glad you liked it.

    Thanks Bellini.

    Chris, I'm glad you loved it!

    Marta, I made pretty much everything for our wedding! Food, decorations, favours, and I embroidered my own dress. Yay for weddings!!

    Haha, thanks Shannalee & Erin!

  32. 32
    Bijoux   June 4, 2009 at 8:23 pm

    kickpleat: Nope, my house is very small (under 1000 sq. ft). The kitchen is kind of small too and there is hardly any counter space.

  33. 33
    Mahek   June 10, 2009 at 6:01 am

    hi
    I loved to see your tiny but warm and lovely kitchen!!! My kitchen is tiny too and i always wish i would have a larger one as i love cooking and Indian food require a lot of ingredients.
    Adding chickpeas is a great idea!!!would love to see more of your kitchen…

  34. 34
    Wendy   June 13, 2009 at 6:15 pm

    I had a similar-ish salad at a Spanish restaurant in Melbourne last year – shredded cabbage, mint and cilantro, crumbled sharp sheep's milk feta, and lots of lovely lemony dressing. I've also made it with the addition of some shredded chicken, but those chickpeas sound like a good idea too!

  35. 35
    Sprouted Kitchen   June 16, 2009 at 4:00 pm

    this looks so simple, but so filling. favorite combo :) Glad I found your blog!

  36. 36
    Fiesta Saurus Rex   June 18, 2009 at 7:45 am

    I want to make this.
    real real real bad.

    I lived in cuba for a few months and despite being really happy to return to a country which was allowed to import spices – I really did learn to appreciate the cabbage.
    You'd be amazing what a little vinagar, salt and pepper will do.

  37. 37
    Koekkener   June 24, 2009 at 1:38 am

    I love the food and I really love this article. A really nice and beautiful blog for kitchen. Thanks for posting.

  38. 38
    kickpleat   July 2, 2009 at 12:10 pm

    Bijoux, bummer! I always figured a house would have better kitchens. Maybe you'll have a renovation in the future to make things work better.

    Mahek, uh, that's pretty much my kitchen! It is tiny.

    Sounds delish, Wendy!

    Sprouted Kitchen, uh ditto! Your blog is simply stunning.

    Fiesta, glad to meet another cabbage-lover.

    Thanks Koekkener.

  39. 39
    KW005   January 22, 2014 at 5:02 pm

    Made this tonight but substituted tuna for chickpeas, amazing! Thanks!!

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