Chickpea and Coriander Soup, with sour cream
And I’d thought to myself at the weekend, there’s no stopping me now. Until I realised that the new grinder I’d bought, suitable for spices, wasn’t grinding coriander seeds very well. As that was the first time to use it I gave it a couple more tries only to find a small metal disc on my work counter, that had belonged inside the motor I was holding. That was a full refund, thanks! So, back to grinding spices by hand – again. That was yesterday. Just now I was in the process of mixing batter for another banana sponge, to be able to photograph that tomorrow. Well, I’ve learnt another invaluable lesson – crack each egg into separate bowls, rather than the actual batter, as you never know when one of them might be very definitely off – and I mean rancid! Whew, the stench! Even with the windows open, and the rubbish dispensed with already, there’s still an odd whiff about the air. Oooooh, might try again tomorrow. Or have I suddenly gone off eggs? Think I’ll wait and buy organic from the other store in future – regardless of the price. Anyway, back to this soup that screams, get me in your top five favourites. It’s surprisingly good. When I was making this not only did the new grinder breaking on me throw me, in that I’d hoped to grind desiccated coconut to a powder, I kept thinking the soup would probably need a further ingredient. So pleased to say that all it needed was lots of sour cream. Okay, plain yoghurt would probably be equally as good, and less calorific. Or even coconut cream of some sort. This recipe is spicy. Well, medium hot. I love, just love cooking with finger chillies as they have yet to fail in delivering the most superb heat time after time. Really must try and grow some from seed as it’s highly likely that store will stop selling them. Until then I’ll be feasting on this recipe that’s not only relatively easy to make it’s pretty much packed with nutrients. That should keep me happy…er!?!
Chickpea and Coriander Soup, with sour cream
- 100g (3.52 oz) x dried chickpeas, soaked overnight
- 300g (10.58 oz) x onions, halved, peeled, trimmed, each half sliced through their middles toward (but not right through) the root end. Each half then sliced crossways into small, thin strips
- 2 x dried bay leaves
- 1 x large green finger chilli (Scoville rating: 50,000), washed and cut in half crossways
- 4 x organic garlic cloves, root end cut off and discarded, peeled and garlic thinly sliced
- 1 x packed teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
- 1 x tablespoon cumin seeds, dry roasted and ground to a powder
- 1 x teaspoon coriander, dry roasted and ground to a powder
- 500ml (1.05 US pt lqd) x cold water
- 1 x organic vegetable stock cube
- 1 x whole stem fresh coriander
- sour cream or plain yoghurt or coconut cream, to serve
- seasoning, both freshly ground sea salt and black pepper
- freshly chopped coriander (cilantro), to serve
Measurements within brackets above are approximate only.
- If using dried chickpeas/garbanzo beans they will need to be well rinsed before adding to a large saucepan with a lid and plenty of cold water. On electric heat No 4 (out of 6) bring to a boil, then take off heat and strain through a metal colander into a suitable bowl. Repeat this process another time. Then, with even more cold water bring to a boil for a third time, reduce heat to N 2 and simmer until cooked. Drain and set aside.
- Put a heavy-based saucepan on electric heat No 3 (out of 6) and when pan is hot pour in a glug of oil. Add the onions, bay leaves and finger chilli pieces and plonk on a lid. I tend to be able to leave mine for around 15 minutes before needing to check on them, and stirring through. After that time I remove the lid and continue cooking, stirring occasionally until the onions start to turn a pale golden colour. Then the heat is reduced to No 2 and the onions are left to cook until nicely golden. If there’s any sign of them drying out then add either a splash or two of water or a little more oil. When golden take off heat and set aside.
- When the onions are nearly ready add the cooked chickpeas to a large saucepan with a little oil. Put on heat No 3 and add the chickpeas. When they start to take on a golden colour take off heat and add the garlic. Stir through. The heat of the pan should be sufficient to cook out the rawness of the garlic. Push the chickpeas to the sides and add the ginger, pouring in a little more oil if necessary.
- In the meantime dry roast the cumin and coriander seeds until they release their fragrance, on heat No 1 for about 5 or more minutes. Do not let them scorch. After grinding them to a powder add to the saucepan in the step above.
- Put the saucepan back on heat, being careful that the garlic, ginger nor the spices are allowed to scorch. Pour in the water, add the stock cube, the bay leaves, finger chilli pieces and the stem of coriander/cilantro and put on heat No 4 with a lid. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to No 2 and simmer until the stock cube has dissolved completely. Add the onions, and allow enough time for those to reheat before serving.
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