Thursday, January 27, 2011

Spicy Chickpea and Lentil Soup- Yummy on a Chilly Day

For those who are snowed in or at home with the kids for the snow day (in NYC) or those who just LOVE to cook, here is a great winter recipe and staple in my seasonal diet in the chilly North East. I cook this and other fun recipes with my son.

Spicy Chickpea & Lentil Soup

This soup is said to have warmed the Berbers duing the cold winters in the Atlas mountains. Serve with a small side of brown rice and keep yourself toasty during the winter. If you don’t have time to soak and boil the beans, (which none of us busy ladies seem to have time for) you may opt to use canned chickpeas and frozen fava beans. But remember- fresh is best, so plan ahead and soak those bad boys overnight and use the dried beans over the canned. This is one of my favorite dishes. It will warm you to the core!

3 tbsp olive oil

2 onions sliced

½ tsp ground ginger

½ tsp ground tumeric

1 tsp ground cinnamon

pinch of saffron threads

2 14oz cans of chopped tomatoes

2 tsp agave nectar

¾ cup brown or green lentils, rinsed

7 ½ cups vegetable stock or water

1 generous cup dried chickpeas soaked overnight, drained, boiled until tender

1 generous cup dried fava beans soaked overnight, drained, boiled until tender

1 small bunch cilantro

1 small bunch Italian parsley

salt & fresh ground pepper

Heat the olive oil in a large pan, add the onions and stir over low heat for 15 minutes or until soft and translucent. Add the ginger, tumeric, cinnamon, and saffron, then tomatoes and agave. Stir in the lentils and pour in the stock or water. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce the heat, cover and simmer about 25 minutes until lentils are tender. Stir in the cooked chickpeas, bring back to a boil, then simmer for 10-15 minutes. Stir in the fresh herbs and season to taste. Serve piping hot.

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