18 April 2012

Chick Peas with Herbs

This is a recipe that is inspired by dishes from the Caucasus, but my husband has informed me that he has never eaten one like it in Ossetia.  He said that they don't really use chick peas very much there or in Georgia, but I have seen several Armenian recipes that use them.  So I don't have an authentic-sounding name for this dish, considering that it's origin is in my kitchen in Texas.  Chick Peas with Herbs will have to do for now.  Any suggestions for a more imaginative name?

Here's what you need:
  • 2 15 oz cans of chick peas (I actually only had one on hand and substituted cannellini beans, which are also known as white kidney beans.  It turned out fine.)
  • 1 15 oz can crushed tomatoes (you can also use fresh, but again, this was what I had on hand)
  • 2 onions
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • parsley (large handful - 1.5 oz/45 g)
  • cilantro (medium handful - 1 oz/30g)
  • dill (small handful - 0.5 oz/15 g)
  • tarragon (small handful - 0.5 oz/15 g)
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste


 Drain and rinse the beans; set aside.  Halve and thinly slice your onions.  Pour a generous drizzle of olive oil into a dutch oven or deep skillet; heat over medium heat.  When the oil begins to shimmer, add your onions and saute them until tender.

 


 Add the crushed (or chopped fresh) tomatoes.  Let this cook for about 10 minutes (tomatoes have lycopene, which is fat soluble.  So cooking them in olive oil makes it easier for the body to absorb the antioxidant).


 Next, add the chick peas.


 Cook for a couple of minutes.  While that is simmering, you can chop the herbs.  I usually just roll all of them into one bundle and chop them up all together.  When you are done with that, add them to the pot. (Save a little for a garnish, if desired.)  Salt and pepper to taste.


 Stir everything in and cook for 5 more minutes.


 That's it!  Serve with mchadi, flatbread, crusty bread (basically, any kind of bread you like) and a little feta crumbled on top if you like.