Sunday, January 3, 2010

Provencal Chickpea Soup

Monday night's dinner is Provencal Chickpea Soup, grilled crostini croutons, roasted fennel, salad and baguettes. I wasn't planning to include the fennel but after I accidentally bought it in a moment of mommy brain at Central Market on Saturday (I was supposed to be buying leeks, which I later had to go back for!), I got inspired to go ahead and make a side out of it.

The soup is from Mediterranean Harvest.

Provencal Chickpea Soup

1 pound dried chick peas, picked over, rinsed, soaked for 6 hours or overnight and drained
8 c water
1 large leek, white and light green parts only, cleaned and chopped
4-6 garlic cloves (to taste), minced
14 oz can chopped tomoatoes
A bouquet garni made with 1 bay leaf, a few sprigs each fresh parsley and thyme, and a parmesan rind (*I used a typical bouquet garni which also included sage and omitted the parmesan rind)
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 T EVOO, additional for drizzling
1/4 c chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
8-12 garlic croutons (Crostini)

1. Place the chick peas in a large soup pot, add the water, and bring to a boil. Skim off any foam, then add the leek, garlic, tomatoes and bouquet garni. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for an hour.

2. Add 2 t. salt to the beans and simmer for another hour, until the chick peas are tender. Add pepper, taste and adjust salt. Remove bouquet garni.

3. Puree soup with hand-held blender or pulse in food processor. It should retain some texture. Return to pot and stir in 1 T EVOO and parsley; taste and adjust seasoning.

4. Heat the soup through and serve, floating a couple of garlic croutons in each bowl and drizzling on a little stream of EVOO.

note: this soup keeps well for about 4 days; it will continue to thicken so you may wish to thin with water.


  1. What's EVOO? No clue over here. . .

  2. Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Rachel Ray uses the term. I think she created it. :)

  3. The soup sounds delicious Sunni. I am looking forward to it. It will warm me up after freezing my arse off this morning on Town Lake.

  4. Yes, I've seen EVOO used a lot lately and it's easier than writing out "olive oil". Had no idea it came from Rachel Ray - I've never watched her show, read any of her books or her magazine!

  5. The whole meal was fantastic!! Thanks!