2 cups dry chickpeas, about 20 ounces 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1 small yellow onion, diced 1 carrot, diced 1 stalk celery, diced2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped ¼ teaspoon ras el hanout ¾ cup tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped, fresh or canned 2 tablespoons tomato paste 4 cups water Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper Fried Ras el Hanout Chickpeas as a garnish Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
Pick over the beans and discard any stones. Soak the beans in a large bowl of water overnight.
Drain the beans, place in a saucepan and cover with water by 2-inches. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to low and simmer until tender, 45 to 60 minutes.
Strain the beans and reserve the cooking liquid. Puree about half the beans in a blender set on high speed for at least 1 to 2 minutes with 1 cup of the cooking liquid to make a very smooth paste. Reserve.
In a large soup pot over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onions, carrots, celery, garlic, and ras el hanout, and cook stirring occasionally until the vegetables are soft, 15 minutes. Add the whole reserved chickpeas, the chickpea puree, tomatoes, tomato paste and water. Bring to a boil and simmer over low heat until the flavors have melded and the soup is thick, 30 to 40 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Ladle into bowls and serve immediately garnished with fried ras el hanout chickpeas and a drizzle of olive oil.
FRIED RAS EL HANOUT CHICKPEAS
6 tablespoons olive oil 2 teaspoons ras el hanout spice blend (homemade or good quality store bought) 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper Kosher salt 1 1/2 cups cooked or canned chickpeas, rinsed, drained, patted very dry 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Preheat an oven to 350F. Heat the olive oil in a medium frying pan over medium-high heat until it begins to ripple. Working in 2 batches, add the chickpeas to frying pan and cook, stirring frequently, until golden and crispy, 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer chickpeas to paper towels to drain briefly.
Place in the bowl with the ras el hanout, cayenne and salt and toss to coat. Let cool. Makes 1 1/2 cups
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