Mom’s Chickpea soup. Umbrian comfort food.

I think this is the very first soup I ate as a little girl.

Mom’s Chickpea soup smells like home, it tastes like my childhood.

The story goes like this:

Towards the end of her days my mom was unable to eat, nevertheless, she loved food.

One hot summer day, the two of us, sat down:  an old agenda to scribble on, her soft voice whispering  her best recipes. To her, it was the closest thing to eating.

We cried, we laughed, and we remembered the good ol’ days. Years have passed, and not one winter goes by without me cooking this soup. It’s thick and earthy. Rich and satisfying, it warms up your soul, and fills up your tummy.

This is the flavor of my memories.


Serves 4

Time : 1 hour

Level: Easy


2 cans ~425 gr/ 15 oz  ( garbanzo beans~low sodium~drain,  do not rinse)

NOTE: if you keep the liquid, you can make yourself the fabulous vegan meringues!!

Interested? Find the recipe here.

1 small shallot, minced

1 clove of garlic

1/2 T Olive oil

2 sprigs of Rosemary

2 Tbs of tomato paste

1/3 cup of wine

4 oz of diced pancetta

A pinch of chili flakes

2 bay leaves

Pig skins ~optional

900 ml Broth (chicken or vegetable)

Parmigiano or Pecorino cheese to garnish

Olive oil to garnish.

OPTIONAL: A handful of pasta such as Orzo pasta or Pepini (small pasta for soup)


Place the olive oil, the garlic and the Pancetta in large pan. Over low /medium heat start browining the meat without burning the garlic. Once the Pancetta  turns translucent and golden, add the pig skins if using, the shallot, and the rosemary sprigs.

Wait until the shallot starts to caramelize, then deglaze with wine.

Let the wine reduce by half, then add the tomato paste. Stir to incorporate and coat all the ingredients.

The tomato paste needs to become very dark, almost purple.

Warm up the broth to almost a boil.

When the tomato paste is nice and dark, add the beans and the broth, the chili if using, a pinch of salt and the bay leaves. Cover the pot.

Cook on low heat for about 30 minutes. When it starts to boil, lower the heat and keep the lid ajar. Taste again for salt.

REMOVE the bay leaves making sure they are still intact. If not, remove all the pieces.

(Bay leaves can be dangerous if ingested! The leaves are thick and dry, the splinters can cut the inside of your mouth of the esophagus. They could be a chocking hazard for children )

With an immersion blender, puree the soup, leaving part of it chunky.

If you decide to add pasta, do it now and let it cook until tender. The soup with pasta tends to be very thick. I like it that way. If you don’t add more broth. Taste again for salt before dishing up the soup.

Garnish with fresh Olive Oil, and a good spoonful of Pecorino or Parmigiano cheese.


Dedicated to Mom, miss you everyday and forever.

2003 Oregon Dunes. Mom and I

Pubblicato da growingupitalian

Salve! Vivo tra due mondi, ma con i piedi per terra. E' un lusso poter scegliere il meglio di entrambi. La vita mi ha fatto questo regalo, e lo voglio condividere con Voi!! Sono nata negli anni 60 in Italia. Il mondo della televisione in Bianco e Nero, senza cibi GMO, senza smart phones. La mia infanzia e' stata costellata di persone incredibili e memorie indelebili della mia famiglia. Ora, 50 anni dopo e 10 mila km di distanza apparte, tutte queste memorie hanno contribuito ad arricchire la mia vita ..dopotutto, una ragazza puo' lasciare l'Italia, ma l'Italia non lasciam mai le sue ragazze!.Hello all. I live in between two worlds (USA and Italy) but I'm really grounded. I believe it's a luxury to be able to pick and choose the best of both. I've been given that gift and I'm sharing it with you. I was born in the 60's in Italy. Black and White pictures, no GMO, no tablets, no computers or cell phones. My childhood was starred by people and memories. It sure takes a village to raise a child...and a great family. I was blessed to have all of the above. Now, fast forward 50 years, 10,000 kilometers away. My life is richer than ever because of my upbringing. I have stories...lots of stories I will share with you. Afterall, A GIRL might leave Italy, but Italy NEVER leaves the girl!

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