Last-Minute Kale and Chickpea Salad with Spicy Tahini Dressing

You know how it goes.

Life happens. You get busy. You make plans. More life happens. And then suddenly, it's time for that picnic or party, or that last-minute get-together and you realize you never went food shopping and everyone is going to be stuck eating whatever is in the fridge, which at the moment includes an unhelpful variety of condiments, four olives, a few spoonfuls of hummus, a tub of Greek yogurt, some tahini paste, bacon, and a sad-looking handful of baby carrots.  (Sigh.)

In times like these, you have to just smile, pull yourself together, and thank the gods you have a defrosting microwave and a well-stocked pantry. You make do with a simple, yet lovely pasta dish (with a sauce of black pepper, bacon, frozen peas, butter and/or cream) or something from the freezer (that extra pot pie or lasagna you made a few weeks ago), and while that is cooking/baking, whip up this easy, tasty salad:

Take the rest of the mound of chopped kale you've been munching on all week, and toss it raw with some well-rinsed and drained canned chickpeas, some salty chopped pecans (or walnuts) and a handful of chopped herbs -- I like cilantro and parsley with this the best. Whisk together a dressing with a bit of lemon juice, sesame oil (or olive oil), tahini, crushed red pepper, Greek yogurt, and a bit of salt/pepper, and add it to the salad. Then, breathe deeply, open a nice bottle of wine, and get on with the show.