Recently, I did a modified take on this tasty Chickpea & Bread Soup. I added bacon because I am a bacon believer (and I pity those who do not celebrate its deliciousness) but I bet it could be made more pro-veggie if you substitute veggie stock instead of the beef and modify the flavors with some heartier elements like Worcestershire sauce.
Also, I added garlic because no food is real food unless there is garlic somewhere involved in creation of said food. (Unless it is dessert. Garlic and dessert are not meant to be.)
Chickpea & Bread Soup with Bacon
- makes 4 to 5 bowls
6 slices bacon (centercut is best)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Medium to Large Onion (Vidalia or Spanish), finely diced or minced
4-6 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 to 1 tsp red pepper flakes, crushed in hand
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp sherry
2 - 15 oz. cans of chickpeas, drained and rinsed (Goya brand or it doesn't count/joking)
1-2 tsp smoked sweet paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
4 cups low sodium beef stock
1 tsp thyme
1/2 baguette, cubed
4-5 oz. shredded cheese (I used Gruyere)
In a large pot/skillet, cook bacon on medium-high heat to just before your normal level of doneness (if you like crispy, just before it turns crispy, etc.). Transfer bacon to paper towel-lined plate.
Lower heat to medium and cook onions for a minute or so before adding garlic. Add oil if necessary, otherwise, add 2 tbsp sherry, black pepper, red pepper flakes and throughly mix. Raise to medium-high heat. Allow to cook for about nine more minutes until onions are softened and sherry has cooked out. Transfer to a small bowl.
Pour about tbsp olive oil to pot and add chickpeas. Cover with paprika and garlic powder, mixing quickly with a wooden spoon to ensure all are evenly coated. Toast chickpeas for about 20 minutes. As original recipe states, do not stir too often. They will pop in the heat and you will only need to stir to make sure the chickpeas don't get stuck to the pot.
While this is happening, roughly chop bacon to bite-sized pieces.
When they are toasted (turning a golden color), add 1/4 sherry, onions & garlic, bacon. Scrape up anything stuck to pan with your wooden spoon. Add black pepper, thyme, a little red pepper flakes. Cook for a minute and add beef stock. Bring to a simmer for 5 minutes.
Add bread to soup and ladle contents to oven safe bowls or small pots. Evenly spread cheese on top and broil in oven until cheese is melted and browned.
- This is REALLY filling. Pretty much a one pot wonder.
Dean Winchester would approve of this soup. *thumbs up*
Tomorrow it looks like we're going to get hit with a possible snow storm and I have the day off from work. I'm thinking of making my modified take on tomato soup with spinach and wee bresaola-and-manchego toasted sandwiches. :D Tasty tiems.