Chickpeas with Cauliflower and Tahini Sauce

For more than a dozen years, senior staff member Pranava Chaitanya has been cooking in the ashram kitchen as well as offering cooking courses. One of his signature dishes, the recipe melds the creaminess of chickpeas with the medium crunch of cauliflower. The combination is delicious, he says.


Chickpeas with Cauliflower and Tahini Sauce

Ingredients (serves 2 to 4 as main dish)

2 lbs dried chickpeas (garbanzo beans)

3-4 medium bay leaves

1 large head cauliflower

½ zucchini (optional)

2 stalks fresh dill, minced finely

4 tbsp tahini (sesame paste)

Olive oil

½ lemon

Salt, pepper



  1. Soak the chickpeas overnight in large pot of water, four times amount of water as beans
  2. Rinse beans, place in pot of fresh water and bring to a boil. Add bay leaves, reduce heat and simmer, until the beans are soft but firm. Occasionally remove foam that forms on the surface. Reserve one third of cooked chickpeas and some cooking water for Tahini Sauce (see below)
  3. In the meantime, cut cauliflower into small florets, cube stems and chop leaves if fresh.
  4. Bring water to boil and steam or blanch the cauliflower, starting with stems and leaves and then the florets. Remove from water when cooked but still firm.
  5. Slice zucchini in half lengthwise and cut into very fine half moons.
  6. Combine all ingredients including Tahini Sauce in a bowl, adding most of the minced dill.
  7. Decorate bowl with remaining dill. Serve.

Tahini Sauce

  1. Blend one third or more of the cooked chickpeas with a hand or machine blender, using cooking water to moisten.
  2. When chickpeas have become a creamy paste, add tahini, olive oil, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste..




Pranava Chaitanya is an advanced Sivananda Yoga teacher and senior staff at the ashram. He regularly teaches workshops, courses, and delivers satsang talks on a variety of topics including yogic practice, meditation, positive thinking, raja yoga, yogic diet, stress management, and yogic tools for happiness. He is one of the most popular and beloved teachers of our Sivananda Essentials Courses. He teaches with love, compassion, and care for his students, while delivering the materials in a very clear and coherent manner. Pranava Chaitanya is also a member of the Hatha Yoga team of our Yoga Teacher Training Courses (TTCs) at the ashram. He is the manager of the ashram kitchen and an expert on yogic and Ayurvedic nutrition and diet.

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