Sunday, December 25, 2016

Ultimate Chickpea Noodle Soup for a Holiday Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all. I hope whether you are celebrating today or not, that you have a happy and peaceful day. Of course one thing that makes me feel at peace is making and eating a big bowl of warm and tasty soup--like this Ultimate Chickpea Noodle Soup by Heidi Swanson. It only has a handful of simple ingredients but they work together well and the combination of soft and crunchy noodles make it fun and unique

This recipe comes from the 101 Cookbooks blog and Heidi Swanson who encountered variations of it on a trip to Italy. Heidi says, "There was one that really stuck out. Imagine garbanzo beans bobbing about in a rich chicken broth with thick ribbons of pasta noodles weaving in between them, droplets of olive oil suspended on the surface of the broth, and the whole thing punctuated with crisped fresh pasta that had been fried in olive oil. Someone said to me, "this is like an Italian version of tortilla soup.

Ultimate Chickpea Soup
Very slightly adapted from Heidi Swanson via 101 Cookbooks
(Serves 4)

4 cups water or a good, mild vegetable stock 
2 cups pre-soaked chickpeas
6 ounces fresh or dried pappardelle (I used Tagliatelle)
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Bring the stock and chickpeas to a simmer and cook until the beans are cooked through. (Mine took about an hour and fifteen minutes.)Taste and season with salt - you will need more or less depending on how salty your stock (or bouillon) is. To give broth a bit of body puree a small handful of cooked beans (20 or so) with a hand blender, and add them back into the pot. (Heidi says this is an optional step and not necessary if you opt for a homemade chicken stock which tends to have more body (from the gelatin in the bones)...this is her vegetarian work-around.)

While the beans cook, boil the pappardelle in well-salted water then drain and set aside 1/3 of the cooked noodles, you are going to fry these. Also, hang on to a cup (or two) of the pasta water in case you need a bit more liquid for your soup.

Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet. Add the reserved noodles and fry them up until they are nice and crispy. Don't let the oil get overly hot, it should be nicely fragrant and able to do its crisping job. Just remember, you are going to use it later in the recipe, so you don't want it to get to its smoking point.

Add the boiled-not-fried noodles into the bean pot and taste for seasoning, salt if needed (add in the reserved pasta water here if you want a bit more broth, but Heidi likes this soup light on the liquid). Spoon about 3 tablespoons of the olive oil from the skillet into the soup and serve with a generous sprinkling of the fried noodles mixed in at the last minute. Heidi says that a drizzle of your favorite table olive oil is a great way to finish the soup.

Notes/Results: This is such a great soup! I love the flavor and the texture both. Having over 400 soups posted on the blog, it gets more and more challenging to find unique ones to make and this one is both different and delicious. There are a few steps and pans involved but it goes together easily and the results are with it. In Heidi's recipe she used petite dried chickpeas (ceci) and pappardelle pasta. I used regular-sized chickpeas and because a small package of dried imported pappardelle was $10.99 at my local grocery store and a bag of imported, dried tagliatelle was $4.00 a bag, I went with the narrower and much less expensive pasta. I don't think it made a huge difference, my noodles were still thick enough to hold up to the chickpeas. I loved the crunch of the toasted noodles on top of the soup. This soup definitely made me happy and I would make it again.

I am linking up this delicious soup to I Heart Cooking Clubs where the theme this week is Simply Entertaining-Heidi Swanson recipes that are easy and perfect to serve to guests. You can see what everyone made by checking out the picture links on the post. 
We have some good friends in the Souper Sundays kitchen who shared some delicious dishes last week--let's have a look!

Melynda of Our Sunday Cafe shared a soup and a salad this week. Her soup is a classic Broccoli and Cheddar Soup and she said, "This is easy and delicious! I have made it twice in about 10 days. The first time per the recipe, the second time with what I had on hand and each pot of soup were simply wonderful....."

Melynda's salad is this pretty Winter Pea Salad Plate with Tomatoes and Cashews. She said, "Today we are offering another delicious recipe from our kitchen. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did…"

Tina of Squirrel Head Manor made a Very Simple Salad of Spinach, Warm Tomatoes & Mushrooms with Egg. She said, "This is a salad that feels like a cheat as far as recipes goes.  The superstar ingredient is a warm egg. These eggs come from  free ranging yard birds who are pampered, having their treats of sweet potato, tomatoes, grapes and such cut in small pieces so they can feast.  These chicken don't know what stress is and thus, they provide wonderful large eggs with deep orangey yolks."

Shaheen of Allotment2Kitchen shared a sandwich, this Vegan Cream Cheese and Kimchi  Sausage Bagel she calls a Kimcheese Bagel and said, "If you don't want to use cream cheese, you can substitute it with a more melty cheese like Cheddar, then I would definitely recommending grilling it. This Kimcheese Bagel made for a satisfying snack in between housework and other things."

Mahalo to everyone who joined in this week! 

Souper Sundays is back with a new format of a picture link each week where anyone interested can post their soups, salads, or sandwiches any time during the week and I post a recap of the entries the following week.)

(If you aren't familiar with Souper Sundays, you can read about of the origins of it here.

If you would like to join in Souper (Soup, Salad, and Sammie) Sundays, I would love to have you! Here's how...

To join in this week's linkup with your soup, salad or sandwich:

  • Link up your soup (stew, chili, soupy curries, etc. are fine), salad, or sandwich dish, (preferably one from the current week or month--but we'll take older posts too) on the picture link below and leave a comment on this post so I am sure not to miss you.

On your entry post (on your blog):
  • please mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and link back to this post.
  • you are welcome to add the wonderful Souper Sundays logo (created by Ivy at Kopiaste) to your post and/or blog (optional).

 Happy Holidays and have a happy, healthy week!


  1. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! The different consistencies from the pasta sounds interesting. I think there is no big difference between pappardelle and tagliatelle in a soup

  2. I have to say that looks really delicious and i like chickpeas. i especially love the crisp noodle topping. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to you, i hope to join in again, and as always thank you for hosting.

  3. Wow! I'm with you, this recipe is really fun and super unique. I don't think I've ever seen a fried noodle as a topping for a soup and I am really intrigued. I can see why this would be comparable to an Italian tortilla soup. Looks really good!


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