We love these braised chickpeas over polenta or rice, but it also makes a really great soup by simply adding 3-4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock to thin it out.
- 2 1/2 cups dried chickpeas, soaked overnight in cold water, drained and rinsed
- 1 fresh or dried bay leaf
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup dried porcini mushrooms, soaked for 30 minutes in warm water, drained and minced very fine + 1 tablespoon of the soaking liquid (after mincing you should 1 heaped tablespoon minced porcini.)
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 cups vegan “chicken” stock if making vegetarian or chicken stock
- 1 (14-ounce) can petite diced tomatoes and juices
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh oregano
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary
- 1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
- kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1 bunch Tuscan kale, ribs removed and leaves cut onto thin ribbons
- juice of 1 lemon
- toasted pine nuts
- oven roasted tomatoes and garlic, optional
- shaved Parmesan, omit if vegan
- Combine the chickpeas, bay leaf, and enough cold water to cover generously in a large pot. Do not salt the water at this point! Bring the water to a boil over medium heat, reduce to low and simmer until it just becomes tender, about 20-25 minutes. Drain, discard the bay leaf and set aside.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350° F. In a large casserole or braising dish heat the oil over medium heat, add the celery, onion, minced porcini and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally until just tender, about 15 minutes. Add the cooked chickpeas, stock, tomatoes, oregano, rosemary, and chili flakes, season well with salt and pepper to taste then bring to a boil.
- Once boiling, remove from the heat, cover, and braise in the oven for 35-45 minutes until the chickpeas are tender. Stir in the kale and continue to braise in the oven for another 8-10 minutes until the kale is very tender. Stir in the juice of 1 lemon right before serving.
- Serve piping hot garnished with pine nuts, shaved Parmesan, and oven roasted tomatoes over polenta, rice or quinoa.
Prep and cook time does not include the soaking time for the chickpeas.