Garbanzo beans, or as they’re otherwise known chickpeas, is another budget friendly food that I use a lot in cooking. You can buy them canned or dried. I always keep a couple of cans in the pantry. I also cook a one pound bag of the dried variety, using the slow cooker for making batches for various recipes. Just like other beans, they’re full of protein, fat free and give offer a good nutritional bang for your buck. Here are some of my favorite ways to use them-
One of my favorite treats is hummus. I used to buy it ready-made at the supermarket but the price jumped up so I went looking for recipes. If you have a food processor, it’s one the easiest things to make, even if you never cook. I like to add roasted red peppers to mine. Another great addition is sun dried tomatoes.
Here’s a recipe to try and don’t worry if you can’t find the tahini, I often make it without and it’s just as good.
This recipe is on my to make list. I’m told it’s really good. Added plus, it’s an inexpensive snack-http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Roasted-Chickpeas/Detail.aspx
Whenever I cook a batch of these beans I keep a cup or two in the fridge for adding to salads throughout the week. I also substitute them for the chicken in cobb salad. Best thing is they have lots of texture and I think even more filling than other beans.
Other dishes I always add them to are curries and I often pair them with tuna, cumin, chopped tomatoes and serve them over couscous for a quick meal.
They are perfect in all types of soups and I especially like them in minestrone. Here’s my recipe that for Old World Italian Soup
3 tablespoons oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 cup chooped carrots
1 cup chopped zucchini
1 cup chopped green pepper
1 teaspoon dried basil
pinch salt and pepper
1 1/2 cups garbanzo beans
1 14 ounce can of chopped tomatoes-Italian recipe with basil, garlic and oregano
2 cups tomato sauce
3 1/2 cups water
In a large sauepan, heat the oil and add the onions and garlic. Cook until soft and transluent.
Add the carrots and the basil and some salt and pepper and cook for about five minutes.
Add the green pepper, zucchini, can of tomatoes, tomato sauce, beans and water and cover and simmer for about 15 minutes.
This serves about 4-6 and I like to add shredded cheese, chopped olives and some slivers of fresh basil on the top. It’s a hearty soup that is great with some Italian bread.