It’s almost Brrr Months, you know what that means? It means colder weather here in the Philippines. We’ve prepared two easy merienda ideas that will surely warm up your day and one surprise easy merienda ideas recipe for those looking for a healthier and comforting merienda during this season.
Fluffy Chickpea Scramble
Here’s a hearty chickpea scramble that can be done in 30 minutes with a secret ingredient that binds the chickpeas and makes them fluffy! This is one of the merienda ideas for a delicious, nutritious (10-ingredient), plant-based meal in a snack.
QUICK BABA GANOUSH (or sub store-bought baba ganoush)
- 1 large eggplant (sliced horizontally into 1/4-inch rounds)
- 1 Tbsp avocado or grapeseed oil (or other neutral, high-heat oil // omit if oil-free)
- 1 pinch sea salt (plus more to taste)
- 3 Tbsp lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp tahini (ground sesame seeds)
- 1 large garlic clove (minced)
- 1 3/4 cup cooked Mega Prime Garbanzos (ChickPeas 225g)(drained but not rinsed, cooking liquid reserved // 1 15-ounce can yields 1 3/4 cup cooked chickpeas)
- 1 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 1/4 tsp ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1 pinch smoked paprika (optional)
- 1/4 tsp each sea salt + black pepper (plus more to taste)
- 1-2 Tbsp water (to thin)
- 1 Tbsp avocado or coconut oil
- 4-6 Tbsp baba ganoush (recipe above or store bought)
FOR SERVING optional
- Roasted sweet potatoes* or other vegetables
- Ripe avocado
- Steamed kale
- Brown rice or cauliflower rice
- If using store-bought baba ganoush, skip this step. Otherwise, preheat the oven to high broil, move a rack to the top of the oven, and line a baking sheet with foil (foil is best for broiling as parchment paper can burn).
- Slice the eggplant and arrange on a foil-lined baking sheet. Lightly drizzle both sides with oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Then broil for 2-3 minutes on each side, watching carefully as it can burn easily. You’re going for a deep golden brown, not black.
- Remove from the oven and stack the eggplant. Fold the foil around the eggplant to steam for 5 minutes.
- In the meantime, add chickpeas and 2-3 Tbsp (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) of their cooking liquid to a shallow mixing bowl. To a separate small mixing bowl, add turmeric, cumin, ginger, paprika, salt, pepper, and water to thin and mix into a pourable paste. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more spices for flavor or salt for saltiness.
- Pour spice mixture over the chickpeas and mash half of them with a fork, evenly distributing the spices until the chickpeas are coated. Sprinkle the chickpeas with a bit more salt for flavor. Set aside.
- Unwrap the eggplant and peel off most of the skin – if well steamed, it should peel right off. Don’t fuss too much about getting all of the skin off – a little bit is fine!
- Transfer eggplant to a food processor (or mixing bowl) and add lemon juice, tahini, garlic, and another healthy pinch of salt. Blend (or mash/whisk) until a paste is formed (see photo). Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more lemon for acidity, garlic for zing/spice, tahini for creaminess, or salt for saltiness. Set aside.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add 1 Tbsp (15 g // amount as the original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) oil and chickpeas. Stir to coat and cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then add desired amount of baba ganoush – 4-6 Tbsp (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size).
- Stir to combine and cook for 3-4 minutes more or until the scramble is slightly drying out and taking on a golden-brown color. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more fresh garlic for garlic flavor/zing, salt for saltiness, or pepper for a little heat. You can also add more baba ganoush for fluffy texture + flavor.
- Serve the chickpea scramble as is or with desired garnishes / sides. I love roasted sweet potatoes, avocado, cilantro, and extra baba ganoush on the side. Hot sauce is also delicious.
- Best when fresh, though leftovers keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave until warm.
Quick Cream of Mushroom Soup
We’ve prepared a classic mushroom soup, this is one of the easiest merienda ideas you can possibly have for those chilly days.
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 pound sliced Mega Prime Whole Mushroom (425g)
- 1/4 cup chopped onion
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) chicken broth
- 1 cup half-and-half cream
- In a large saucepan, heat butter over medium-high heat; saute mushrooms and onion until tender.
- Mix flour, salt, pepper and 1 can broth until smooth; stir into mushroom mixture. Stir in the remaining can of broth. Bring to a boil; cook and stir until thickened, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat; stir in cream. Simmer, uncovered, until flavors are blended, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Dill Chicken Soup
These merienda ideas are so easy yet hearty and colorful at the same time. Perfect for the coming brr months up ahead and did I mention it’s packed with so much goodness for you?
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 2 medium carrots, chopped
- 1 small onion, coarsely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 cup uncooked whole wheat orzo pasta
- 1-1/2 cups coarsely shredded rotisserie chicken
- 6 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 1-1/2 cups frozen Mega Prime Green Peas (155g) (about 6 ounces)
- 8 ounces fresh baby spinach (about 10 cups)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or 1 tablespoon dill weed
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- Coarsely ground pepper, optional
- In a 6-qt. stockpot, heat oil over medium heat. Add carrots, onion and garlic; saute until carrots are tender, 4-5 minutes.
- Stir in orzo, chicken and broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 5 minutes. Stir in peas, spinach and dill; return to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, until orzo is tender, 3-4 minutes. Stir in lemon juice. If desired, top each serving with coarsely ground pepper.
Let us know in the comments how these merienda ideas made your day better! We would also love to know more about which ingredients you want new recipes for. Don’t forget to share this article with your friends and family, we hope you continue to support the Prime Mom Club.
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