Food Matters: Chickpea & Carrot Soup
I was just reading an article about the 10 WORST, and the 10 BEST foods for you.
On the list of WORST foods were the usual suspects:
- Cold Cuts (processed disgusting deli meat filled w/ preservatives)
- Diet Soda (is soda a food?)
- Canned Soup (must be the high sodium content)
- Margarine (a tablespoon of real butter is not going to kill you!)
On the top of the BEST foods were:
- Sweet Potatoes (coming in at #1, high fiber and high in vitamin C)
- Broccoli (high in antioxidants)
- Mangoes (high in vitamin A and other good stuff)
- Greek Yogurt (pro-biotics)
- and the lowly Garbanzo Bean (chickpeas)
The garbanzo bean is rich in protein, fiber, iron, magnesium, potassium, and zinc.
Hey, I never knew that, I just liked them because they were cute and versatile.
Try them dried, instead of canned, and you will be hooked!
Since I am trying to eat healthier in the new year, I turned to Mark Bittman's new book The Food Matters Cookbook, and looked for recipes using chickpeas.
The carrot chickpea soup sounded great.
He suggests using dried chickpeas because they make a wonderful broth, and he was right. They cook up fairly quickly, in about an hour or so, even quicker, if you soak them for an hour before hand.
The 2nd time I made this soup, I tried it w/ a 15 oz. can of drained chickpeas with very successful results. You be the judge.
Don't forget the almonds on top, this makes the soup even more amazing!
This was delicious!
Chickpea & Carrot Soup w/ Almonds: (adapted from Mark Bittman)
1 cup dried chickpeas (garbanzo beans), soaked for an hour or more (or a 15oz. can of drained garbanzo beans)
2 onions, chopped
1 lb. carrots (4 big ones), peeled and chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tsp Pimenton (Spanish SMOKED paprika)
2 tsp cumin
salt & pepper
5-6 cups of stock (I used 3 cups chicken broth, 2 cups water)
1 cup of orange juice
sliced or chopped almonds for garnish
fresh cilantro for garnish
In a heavy stockpot or Dutch oven, saute the onions, carrots and garlic in olive oil for 10 minutes. Season with salt, cumin, and pimenton the last 30 seconds of cooking.
After the vegetables are softened, add the liquid and the chickpeas to the pot. Bring to a boil, then turn down to a simmer. If you are using the dried beans, then simmer for at least an hour until chickpeas are very tender.
If you are using the canned beans, then simmer for 15 minutes so the carrots get soft.
Once your vegetables and beans are cooked, add the cup of orange juice.
Bittman says you can serve this soup pureed & creamy, or rustic style, leaving the vegetables whole.
I pureed half the solids with an immersion blender, then added it back to the pot so it thickened up a bit, while leaving some of the good stuff whole.
Garnish w/ the nuts and parsley and eat and be healthy.