Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Tuscan Chickpea Soup

* 2 cans (15 oz.) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
* 2 large whole garlic cloves, peeled
* 1 can (14 1/4 oz.) reduced-sodium vegetable broth
* 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
* 2 cups water
* 1 medium onion, chopped
* 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
* 1 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
* Salt and freshly ground black pepper
* 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil, for garnish (optional)
* 1 tsp. lemon juice (optional)
* 2 1/2 Tbsp. minced flat-leaf parsley, for garnish (optional)

Place chickpeas and garlic in large saucepan. Pour broth and 2 cups cold water into pot. Add liquid to pot and over medium-high heat, bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, until beans are very soft, 20 minutes. Let the soup sit 10 minutes to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, heat oil in small skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Transfer mixture to blender.

Add chickpeas, garlic, liquid, tomato paste and rosemary. Purée until smooth. This may need to be done in 2 batches. Make soup smooth or leave some texture, as you prefer. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve, ladle soup into bowls. Garnish each either by drizzling 1/2-teaspoon of olive oil over the soup, or by mixing in 1 teaspoon lemon juice. Sprinkle with parsley.

Makes 6 servings or 6 cups.

Per serving: 142 calories, 3 g. total fat (less than 1 g. saturated fat), 21 g. carbohydrate,
8 g. protein, 5 g. dietary fiber, 372 mg. sodium.

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