Tahini Chickpea Cucumber Salad
We talk a lot about antioxidants and healthy fats as being crucial for skin health, but there’s another nutrient that’s a bit of an unsung hero when it comes to beauty: protein. In fact, it might just be the most important nutrient for fighting signs of aging like collagen loss and reduced elasticity. Protein contains L-lysine and L-proline, both of which promote collagen production.
Keep in mind, though, that animal protein is considered “complete” because it contains all amino acids; if you don’t eat meat, you’ll need to eat a wide variety of plant-based proteins to get all the amino acids you need throughout the day. This Tahini Chickpea Cucumber Salad has a complete amino acid profile because it combines a legume (chickpeas) with a seed (tahini, which is made from sesame seeds).
- 2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 small cucumber, seeded, quartered lengthwise and sliced
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint, parsley leaves, or a combination of the two
- 1/4 cup tahini
- Juice from 2 lemons
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon water (if needed)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
In a large bowl, combine the chickpeas, cucumber, and herbs.
Whisk the tahini, lemon juice, and olive oil in a small bowl and add water to thin a bit, if needed. You’ll want the dressing to be on the thick side, since the cucumber will release some liquid into the salad, but it should still be thin enough that it can be poured.
Pour the dressing into the large bowl with the salad and gently stir until all the ingredients are coated. Season with salt and pepper to taste.