Sunday, November 25, 2018

Chickpea Rice Soup with James Beard's "Onion Rings" Sandwiches: Simple Comfort for Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays

I was hoping it was allergies but I think I have to admit that I have my first cold of the season. Consequently, I have been laying low over the weekend and not in the mood for much effort. I decided to throw the contents of my veggie drawer together with beans and rice from the pantry to make Chickpea & Rice Soup, a vegan take on chicken and rice soup. 

I'm pairing my soup with Ruth Reichl's take on James Beard's "Onion Rings"--little onion sandwiches that can be made vegan with the right mayo. It's simple comfort food and hopefully the alliums, specifically the onion, garlic, and leeks will work their magic on my stuffy nose.

Chickpea Rice Soup
By Deb, Kahakai Kitchen
(Makes About 6 Servings)

2 Tbsp olive or coconut oil
1/2 sweet onion, chopped
2 medium leeks, white & light green parts halved. cleaned and sliced
1 medium carrot, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 russet potato, chopped
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp caraway seed
1/2 tsp dried sage
1/2 tsp celery seed
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 bay leaf
8 cups low-sodium vegan chicken broth 
2 (15 oz) cans low-sodium chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 cup long grain rice
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
chopped parsley to serve

Heat oil in a large soup pot. Add the onion, leek, carrot and celery and saute for 10 minutes until veggies are softened. Add the garlic, potato, thyme, caraway seed, sage, celery seed, smoked paprika and bay leaf and saute for another 2 minutes.

Add the broth, chickpeas and rice and bring to a boil. Cook for 20 minutes or until rice and vegetables are tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper and top with fresh parsley to serve. Enjoy alone or with the onion sandwiches below. 


James Beard's "Onion Rings"
From My Kitchen Year &

Ruth Says: "I made James Beard’s “onion rings” the other night for the first time in a while. Now’s the perfect moment for them – farmers’ markets are filled with sweet onions just pulled from the earth, and this is the best way I know to showcase that compelling flavor. On top of that, this is the moment when all the parsley in the garden is proud and full.
Start with a loaf of sturdy white bread. Or traditional Pepperidge Farm sandwich white.  

Using a 2 1/2 inch cookie cutter, cut circles out of the bread. Slather them with good commercial mayonnaise and sprinkle them with salt.
Slice your onions very thinly.
Chop a good amount of parsley as finely as you like.
Put a slice of onion on a circle of bread and sandwich it with another circle of bread.
Spread mayonnaise on the edge of each sandwich and roll it in chopped parsley. 

These keep surprisingly well; I just ate the last of the two-day old sandwiches. It made a perfect 10 a.m. snack."

Notes/Results: A simple, savory and tasty soup, full of good flavor from the herbs and garlic and texture from the chickpeas and vegetables. I packed mine with rice, to make it thick and satisfying, so if you want, you can add less for a brothier soup. For the Onion Rings sandwiches I used a sweet Maui onion and Just Mayo vegan mayonnaise and I really enjoyed the little sandwiches-although I would probably buy a loaf of thinner white bread rather than use the sourdough that I had on hand. I'll let you know if the soup (and those onion sandwiches) help kick my cold. ;-)

Linking up the tasty little sandwiches at I Heart Cooking Clubs where our theme this week is Bread Basket--Ruth Reichl recipes for or featuring bread.

Let's take a look into the Souper Sundays kitchen:

Tina of Squirrel Head Manor is here with a soup and sandwich combo of Chicken Salad on Croissant and Loaded Baked Potato Soup. She says, "This isn't homemade but it is inspiration for me to duplicate this soup. Hopefully I can do that and post in an upcoming Souper Sundays. Doug met me for lunch one day this past week and we did the easy thing - went to a restaurant so we could eat, talk and then run a few errands. ... This soup was such a hearty bowl of comfort food on a chilly day. I need to make a version that isn't so heavy on the bacon but just as creamy and cheesy. Certainly there are other folks who enjoy duplicating a recipe and tweaking it to their taste, it's a cool challenge and so rewarding when it turns out well. So, coming up I hope to share a loaded potato soup recipe that's all homemade!"

Mahalo to Tina for joining in this week!
About Souper Sundays:

Souper Sundays (going since 2008) now has a format of a picture link each week where anyone interested can post their soups, salads, or sandwiches at 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 Souper Sunday'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. Also please see below for what to do on your blog post that you link up her in order to be included in the weekly round-up.

On your entry post (on your blog):
  • Mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and link back to this post. (Not to be a pain but it's polite and only fair to link back to events you link up at--so if you link a post up here without linking back to it on your post, it will be removed.)
  • You are welcome to add the Souper Sundays logo to your post and/or blog (optional).

Have a happy, healthy week!


  1. Sorry to hear you are not feeling well. It is no fun being sick. I hope this soup did its magic.

  2. I brought you a hot soupy jambalaya and if you ate meat, you'd love it! I know it sucks having a cold get you down and I certainly hope you are feeling better now.

    By the way, this soup rocks my boat and I have to try it soon.

  3. I remember reading somewhere about those onion sandwiches -- never thought of them as cold medicine, though. I hope it worked.

    best... mae at

  4. I just realized that my recipe this week, fits your Souper Sunday! Hope my link and note will work for you.

  5. Oh Deb, your chickpea and rice soup is exactly what I've been craving this week! So hearty and comforting and even beany (which you know I love). I have no doubt this helped to comfort you with your first cold of the season. The onion sammies are so pretty with all the parsley!


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