One of the hits of the 'Kosh Atlanta' pop-up restaurant I created as part of my senior project at the Kennesaw State University Michael A. Leven School of Culinary Sustainability and Hospitality last November was our Moroccan inspired chickpea soup. Recipe adapted from the Foodnetwork.com(Dave Lieberman.) This recipe tastes best if prepared a day or two ahead of serving, to allow the flavors to meld. Serves 6-8 Parve
1/4 cup Olive Oil
1 large Yellow Onion, diced
8 Cloves of Garlic, minced
2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
2 tsp. Ground Cumin
2 tsp. Smoked Paprika
2 tsp. White granulated Sugar
1/8 tsp. Cayenne Pepper
1 14.5 oz Can Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes
2 14.5 oz Cans Cooked Chickpeas
1 Quart Vegetable Broth
5 oz. Baby Spinach
Kosher Salt and Ground Black Pepper, to taste
Rye Bread(apx. 8 slices)
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until the onions begin to turn translucent; lower heat if browning starts to occur. Add spices and saute a minute, or so. Add tomatoes, chickpeas, broth, and sugar. Season with a couple pinches of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stir well and bring to a boil, then lower heat to low and gently simmer for 45 minutes.
Remove soup from heat. Stir in the spinach and let heat through until wilted, about 8-10 minutes.
Season again, to taste, with salt and pepper. If desired, add sugar and cinnamon according to taste.
Serve soup, drizzled lightly with olive oil and garnish with Rye Croutons.
Croutons: Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut the rye bread into 1” cubes and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and garlic powder. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until lightly crisp. Set aside and let cool.
I've noticed that some people seem to be afraid of borscht (and beets in general), though I am not sure why. this stuff is awesome. Noting of course this is not cold jarred borscht you buy of the supermarket shelf. This is the REAL THING (apologies to Coca-Cola). This beet and flanken borscht is a holiday staple in my house and is so good that a couple years ago one of my family's holiday guests ran back into the kitchen to get more, and with other guests also wanting seconds- we were a little embarrassed that it turned out we had not made enough. We know better for next time.
Smooth, creamy, rich, and complex.
Rub off as much of the pistachio skins as possible, set nuts aside. In a 4- to 5-quart pan over medium heat, cook the onion, celery, and garlic in the margarine until onion is very limp but not brown, about 10 minutes, stir often.
Add wine, 3/4 cup of the pistachios, broth, rice, parsley, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer until rice is tender to bite, about 25 minutes. Discard bay leaf. In a blender or food processor, whirl soup, a portion at a time, until very smooth, pour through a wire strainer and discard residue. Return soup to pan.
Add cream to soup and stir over medium-low heat until hot, 5 to 7 minutes. Garnish servings with whole chives and sprinkle with the remaining pistachios.