What Can’t You Make With Chickpeas?

Screen Shot 2013-05-31 at 10.06.13 AMI’m partial to chickpeas — or garbanzo beans, if you prefer — and not because they were among the first legumes I ever ate. (My mother would open a can and put them out at parties, with salt and pepper; you can do better than that. Sorry, Mom.) They have what to me is an irresistibly robust and nutty flavor, and a texture that can run from crunchy to tender.

In addition to canned, you may see fresh chickpeas; peel them and cook them quickly, as if they were favas or peas. Increasingly you can find chickpea flour, also called besan or gram flour, in Indian markets, where it’s most common, though it’s also becoming more popular as a flour substitute for the gluten-intolerant.

But dried is the most common form. Dried chickpeas take longer to cook than other beans (two hours is a likely cooking time); use enough water, and the process is stress-free. One major benefit to cooking chickpeas yourself — aside from the superior flavor and texture — is that the water you cook them in becomes particularly rich and flavorful by the time they’re done. Save it for soups like the cold one here, which is a refreshing riff on hummus.

Read the rest of this article, here

Posted in Recipes, Vegan


  1. CJ said...

    I’m glad to have all three forms of chickpea. Canned is best for hummus. Dried/soaked is best for falafel. And fresh is best for eating as you would any other bean 🙂

  2. Anita chatterjee said...

    Growing up in India, check pea lflour is an important ingredient in our cooking. Pancakes,( besan poodha) flatbread ( besan paratha) and onion/ potato fries( pakora) .
    Ofourse nothing beats the Chana Masala with whole wheat naan or basmati rice.
    Thanks for sharing more ideas on the wonders of chick peas Mark!

  3. Ttrockwood said...

    Awesome article, love that the recipes are all nearly vegan yet at no point is that part of the conversation. Which is how it should be.
    Just ordered chickpea flour online and made the soup this afternoon (vegan, no feta) and love it- i’ll have some great lunches this week!

  4. Francesca Savo said...

    Yes indeed, yummy chickpeas. You may not be able to buy them on every corner,however, the BEST panelle’s can be found at Fernando’s on Union Street in Brooklyn NY. They have been serving them on a sesame bun with rigiotta cheese and a shaving of hard logatelli for at least 50 years. A Sicilian delicacy.

  5. Nadine Fuchs said...

    Dear Mark, tried the Panelle tonight and found problems. As an experienced polenta maker I was dismayed to find many lumps as I added water. Ran it through the food processor. When I put the mixture back into the pan. it never boiled. It just started to burn. Next the mixture did not fill the 1/4 sheet pan. Undaunted, I filled 3/4 of the pan, chilled it and then proceeded to fry. I found several problems. Some of the “fries” separated when I turned them. Some just disintegrated causing particles in the oil that started to burn. 3 out of 5 “fries” made it and they were great. Have any suggestions for a more successful experience. I thought more water could help. I will try again. I am determined.

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