This 6-Ingredient Chickpea Soup Will Convince You to Skip Canned Versions for Good

Chicken noodle has nothing on this chickpea soup.

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Chickpea soup with beet greens and corn fritters
Photo: Caitlin Bensel

On the dead-of-winter days when the sun sets at 4 p.m. and the scene out your window looks like the Arctic tundra, you're likely to be craving either a rich, frothy cup of hot cocoa or a steaming bowl of hearty soup. And if the latter is your hankering of the moment, whatever you do, please don't dust off a can of chicken noodle and call it a day.

Instead, whip up this chickpea soup which contains just six (yes, really) ingredients, and that's not even the best part. Crafted by Dan Kluger — the award-winning chef and owner of Loring Place in New York and the author of the new book Chasing Flavor: Techniques and Recipes to Cook Fearlessly (Buy It, $32, bookshop.org) — the chickpea soup will help you reduce your food waste by incorporating beet greens into the broth. You know, the leaves you chop off a bunch of beets and usually toss in the trash. And to top it all off, you'll add salty-meets-spicy corn fritters, made from cornmeal, parmesan, and Aleppo pepper. Drooling.

So the next time your stomach is screaming for something warm and cozy, turn to this chickpea soup. Promise, you won't miss the pre-packaged stuff.

Chasing Flavor: Techniques and Recipes to Cook Fearlessly

Chasing Flavor: Techniques and Recipes to Cook Fearlessly
Bookshop

Chickpea Soup with Beet Greens and Corn Fritters

Serves: 4 to 6

Chickpea Soup

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large white onion, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 pound beet greens (from 2 bunches), washed; leaves roughly chopped and stems cut into 1- to 2-inch pieces
  • 7 cups water
  • One 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan, heat the oil. Add the onion, garlic, and 1 tablespoon salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the tomato paste, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the beet stems, and cook, stirring occasionally, until they just begin to soften, about 4 minutes.
  3. Add the beet greens, and cook until wilted, about 3 minutes. Add the water, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. Add the chickpeas, and simmer for 15 minutes. Season the soup with salt and pepper.

Corn Fritters

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup finely ground yellow cornmeal
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning the fritters
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon Aleppo pepper or 1 1/2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • Vegetable oil

Directions:

  1. While the soup is cooking, combine the water and butter in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, then whisk in the cornmeal.
  2. Reduce the heat to low, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cornmeal reaches the texture of soft polenta, about 15 minutes.
  3. Stir in the salt, pepper, and cheese. Cook, stirring, 1 minute longer. Add the eggs and Aleppo pepper, and whisk constantly to make sure the eggs are distributed evenly. Remove from the heat, and let cool slightly.
  4. Add 1 inch vegetable oil to a medium saucepan, and heat to 350°F. Working in batches, drop the cornmeal batter into the hot oil, 1 rounded tablespoon at a time, and fry, turning a few times, until golden all over, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate, and sprinkle with salt.
  5. To serve, divide the soup among bowls, and top each with a couple of fritters. Serve.

Excerpted from Chasing Flavor: Techniques and Recipes to Cook Fearlessly, © 2020 by Daniel Kluger. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

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