Salmon and Chickpea Soup, with caramelised onions and a hint of lime

Wild Pink Salmon and Chickpea Soup, with caramelised onions and a hint of lime

This has to be one of the easiest soups to make. And yet, this was delicious. Why I’ve never thought of using canned wild pink salmon, except in a chowder, in a soup before surprises me. Especially as salmon and trout are two of my favourite fish. There’s also very little prep involved. Although I do allow the onions to caramelise over low heat whilst I prep the salmon. Yes, I do remove any skin and bones. Don’t like the sliminess nor crunch of either. That’s pretty much it for the prep. Chop 1 onion and open a can…can’t get much easier, can it?

Actually, it does take a little time as the texture of the chopped onions (rather than finely chopped) makes a difference here. As my kitchen resembles something akin to a mobile home I don’t have a chopping board large enough. Hmm, I lie. I just don’t bother. If I need finely chopped I use a grater instead. The problem with that is you really need to use a very low heat setting to cook grated onion, which I don’t have. Besides, you ought to stay with the onions and stir through occasionally. As I was busy blogging the previous post I decided not to finely chop. Enough said. How you chop yours is your business.

Dill, of course, should be the herb of choice. I prefer curly leaf parsley freshly snipped into the bowl just before eating. I think the flavour works best, for me anyway, as there is a faint hint of lime to this. Why lime works so well here is anybody’s guess. The other thing that sort of surprised me was that I would’ve liked a little bit more heat. As I can’t get my hands on a packet of red pepper flakes – ARG$%£HHH!!! – I have to use cayenne pepper instead. Sorry, needed to get that off my chest. There are no Turkish stores nearby; and the supermarkets in the UK (apart from a small chain) don’t sell the stuff. And no, I’m not talking crushed chillies as those always contain seeds – too hot!

A salad of leaves, possibly spinach or wild rocket, dressed in white Balsamic and a fruity olive oil would be delicious with this. Especially with a small handful of chopped capers and whole pumpkin seeds. Hard boiled eggs, too, would be an absolute treat.

Wild Pink Salmon and Chickpea (Garbanzo Beans) Soup, with caramelised onions and a hint of lime


  • 1 x medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 150g (5.29 oz) x cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed (if out of a can)
  • 1 x 213g (7.51 oz) can wild pink salmon, drained, skin and bones removed
  • 1 x medium garlic clove, peeled and sliced into slivers
  • 1 x medium carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1/4 x scant teaspoon cayenne pepper OR 1/4 x teaspoon red pepper flakes, less to personal taste
  • 1 x thin wedge of fresh lime, squeezed
  • 1 x bay leaf, ripped
  • 1 x parsley stalk, washed
  • 500ml (1.05 pt US Liq) x water
  • 1 x vegetable stock cube
  • potatoes – optional
  • fresh curly parsley, snipped just before eating

Measurements within brackets above are approximate only.


  • Put a heavy-based saucepan on lowest heat with enough oil to cover its base. Add the finely chopped onions and allow to pan-fry for around 20 minutes, stirring through as often as possible – otherwise they will scorch.
  • In the meantime prep the salmon.
  • When the onions have turned golden add the garlic and cayenne pepper/red pepper flakes and stir through. Add the cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans), salmon chunks and allow to settle. Up the heat a little to electric No 2 (out of 6) for a little time, reducing the heat to No 1 if anything is sticking to the base of pan. When garlic has cooked through, and that only takes about 5 minutes, squeeze over the wedge of lime. Allow a couple of minutes for the flavours to infuse, taking the saucepan off heat  if necessary.
  • Pour in the water, add the vegetable stock cube, bay leaf and parsley stalk. Put on heat No 4 and bring to a boil.
  • Prep the carrot and potatoes, if using, and add to the above, including a lid. Bring to boiling point, then reduce heat to No 1 or 2 with a lid and simmer until the carrots (remove and discard the carrot pieces when cooked) and potatoes are cooked.
  • Serve with lots of freshly snipped parsley, freshly ground sea salt and black pepper.

All photographs within (Todas las fotografías dentro de) Feed the Piglet:
All rights reserved (© Todos los derechos reservados) – Copyright © Johnny H Hepburn

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