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In Nice the chickpea is part of many traditional dishes. Above all a pancake like dish called “Socca”. I haven’t had the pleasure to try that one yet but I will dedicate a seperate post to it once I do.

Most of chickpea consumption takes place via Falafel, Hummus or as whole chickpeas in various dishes.

I love them, my boyfriend hates them. I definitely don’t know any other canned vegetable with a cuter name… chick + pea- come on :-)

I did try to cook them myself a few times. You can get bags of the dried version in almost every supermarket but I found that with all that time that has to go into preparing them it’s just not worth the effort. They need to be soaked in water for at least 12 hours and you will notice a considerable increase in size so if you do try this make sure you put them in a bowl big enough for them to expand. Then you have to cook them for what felt to me like forever although my judgement might have been influenced by the increasing feeling of hunger in my stomach.

I generally like to add them to mediterranian type dishes like couscous or rice or just about anything that involves olives, zuchini or bell peppers. Recently I’ve stumbled across several recipes that pair them with lemon or lime juice for a tangy kick and I think I might try that sometime.

But tonight I made a super simple recipe inspired by the “Chickpea and Tomato Stew”  that I found over at “I’ll Have What She’s Having” . I just played around with the spices a bit since I didn’t have coriander at hand and was more in the mood for something spicy.

You’ll need:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger,finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon red hot pepper flakes

Just throw all this in a skilett and let it brown a bit until the garlic and the ginger becomes nice and fragrant.

Then add:

  • 2 teaspoons Garam Masala
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 cups diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups cooked chickpeas (I used the canned version)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoon tomato paste

Let it simmer for about 10 minutes so the chickpeas absorb all the flavours. Before serving add a tablespoon of

  • sour cream or joghurt

I love this dish especially on cool winter days to warm up from the inside.  In my opinion crummy weather outside makes this taste even better, there’s something so simple and comforting about it.