Posted by: lornasass | March 22, 2010


Photo courtesy of Kelley Dunfield

This month Kelley Dunfield of Alberta Canada is cooking and blogging her way through the recipes in my various cookbooks. She’s a new convert to the pressure cooker and her enthusiasm is helping me spread the word.

If you’d like the recipe for Thai Chickpeas, a personal favorite, and see what else Kelley has been pressure-cooking, click on the link above.

The Thai chickpea recipe comes from my GREAT VEGETARIAN COOKING UNDER PRESSURE, which is actually a VEGAN cookbook–but few people knew what the word “vegan” meant when it was published—would you believe?  How things have changed…My culinary fate in life seems to be to get there before anyone else does, then move on to another pressing subject before people get the prior idea in a big way.

Another of my vegan cookbooks, RECIPES FROM AN ECOLOGICAL KITCHEN, came out in 1992 and few people wanted to hear about it…Yes, things have changed and it’s a good thing too!



  1. I am sitting here with a bowl of this delectable concoction (so fast, so easy), and I believe I have died and gone to heaven! Oh, my goodness! I didn’t think it could be this good!

    I added a tiny bit of serrano chile to top my plate–diced very finely (because I like a little heat).

    Wow–this one is a major winner! Every note is perfect. Thanks for highlighting it here on your blog. Page 198-199 in your book.

  2. Yesterday I made Lorna Sass’ Pasta Fagioli recipe and it is absolutely delicious!!! After vising Providence RI’s Federal Hill (Italian) district and consuming their version, I must say Lorna Sass’ recipe is superior. I purchased Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure during the 1990’s; loved it then; and have rediscovered it after moving and locating it boxed. Lucky me! I cannot not wait to try the Black Bean Chili, and the the Vegetable Risotto is next on my menu in a couple of days!!

  3. This is my first post, and I have to say I’ve been using your books for nearly 15 years!! I have also made this recipe for years, after your vegetarian book first came out. Lately though, I’ve taken to adjusting the recipe a bit. In fact, I’ve wanted to write you about them for some time now.

    Instead of chickpeas, I now often used red lentils. I also soak them for a little while first, mainly to reduce cooking time. I overcook the lentils with the coconut, onions, garlic, with added with fresh ginger, galangal, lemongrass, and kaffir lime leaves, and also some Thai curry paste. Once cooked, I release the pressure and scoop out the galangal, lemongrass, and kaffir lime, and then puree the lentils with a blender stick. I’ve also taken to adding silken tofu at this stage, and the tomatoes. Once blended, I add the Thai basil and cilantro, and adjust seasonings to taste.

    This approach forms a luscious, thick, creamy base for a more traditional Thai curry with fresh green beans, peppers, and then either fried tofu or a quorn roast cut up into cubes added in, with more fresh herbs over top.

    After thinking and experimenting with the recipe even further, I realized that sweet potatoes and red lentils make a great base for other dishes, but using different spice profiles. I make an Indian “mulligatawny” curried soup that uses this bases, with the coconut, but I start off by toasting whole Indian spices (ginger, fenugreek, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, coriander, turmeric, Madras curry powder, a touch of cardamon, clove) in oil, or a little ghee. I cook the base (not overcooked though), release pressure, but don’t puree it, and then add in some celery, fresh cilantro, basil, chopped fresh fenugreek, red and green peppers. It’s great paired with Chana Saag (Chickpea with greens), to which I sometimes add fried paneer cheese.

    Another variation is similar to Turkish Mericemek Çorbası. Again, red lentils and sweet potato (which is not really a Turkish ingredient, but after making it, I find that it’s just TOO YUMMY, not to mention nutritious to ever leave out!!), but no coconut, and I use European spices like Bay leaves during cooking, and after releasing the pressure add fresh or good canned tomatoes, Italian Basil, oregano, a little rosemary, cilantro, even mint.

    So thanks for this inspiring recipe, as I’ve certainly gotten a lot of mileage out of it!!

    • Thanks Jake! So glad you’re really taking off!

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