I came across the original version of this recipe on a facebook page I quite like: Recipe Clippings. They post old recipes they have come across in newspapers, pamphlets, magazine ads, and the like.
At first, this was a layered salad, with the chick peas and other veggies tossed in the dressing at the bottom of the bowl, topped with chopped romaine lettuce, sliced hard cooked egg, and pepperoni.
I loved the whole concept, but (of course) needed to make a few changes.
I upped the veggies called for to include red onion, blanched asparagus, and sliced peperoncini (because, hey, antipasto!), added cubed cooked ham to the pepperoni and added both of them to the dressing layer, and, finally, I used about half of a bag of coleslaw mix in place of the romaine.
Note: I have rather a lot of ham on hand right now, so, it was a natural addition. If you find yourself similarly loaded with chicken or turkey, I am betting that they will also work a treat here.
•1 can (15 oz) chick peas, drained and rinsed
•1 jar (7 oz) marinated artichoke hearts
•1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
•1/2 cup sliced Blanched Asparagus
•1/2 cup diced cooked ham
•1/2 cup sliced pepperoni
•1/4 cup sliced peperoncini
•1/4 cup sliced Kalamata olives
•1/2 cup Italian dressing
•1/4 tsp crushed red pepper (optional, but nice, and not too, too hot)
•Coleslaw mix (or romaine)
•2 hard cooked eggs, chopped
Note: do NOT drain the artichoke hearts.
Toss all of the salad base ingredients together in a large bowl and top with coleslaw mix and eggs.
Cover and chill for up to four hours, then toss to mix before serving.
Note: I think that the coleslaw mix stands up to being tossed with the dressing mixture far better than romaine, so, if you are anticipating leftovers, you should definitely go the cabbage route. If you are feeling strongly about romaine, mebbe arrange a layer of it, chopped, on a large platter and top with the (what I now think of as) antipasto coleslaw just before serving.
Either way, this is another pretty terrific new salad that we both totally enjoyed.