The weather has finally turned in Southern California! In my world, that means it is “bug-in-a-rug” soup season! As much as I mourn the loss of “Hot Summer Nights”, daylight savings, and sunshine, I do look forward to cuddling up in front of the fire with a delicious bowl of steaming soup. Those of you who know me will say that it doesn’t need to be Winter for me to extoll the virtues of a healthy bowl of soup, and you would be right. Whether, it is “Winter, Spring, Summer, or Fall” a delicious bowl of soup (hot or cold) never ceases to satisfy me. It is the ultimate comfort food that seems to nourish the body and the soul. But aside from the romantic “warm and fuzzies”, soup is practical! It is quick, easy, hearty, nourishing, delicious, nutritious, and dead easy to make!
I thought I would sneak this cheeky soup recipe in before we step into full "holiday acidic orgy" mode. I shared this soup in my recent guest post on Pineapple Shave Ice, and almost forgot to share it here until I was asked to enter the Hostel Bookers Backpacker recipe competition, where people from all over the world are submitting easy tasty recipes that can be made quickly in a backpacker's hostel kitchen. People have submitted everything from breakfast omelettes, sandwiches and frittatas; to delicious pasta and noodle dishes; salads, stir-fries, desserts, and drinks.
I thought this chickpea and rosemary soup would be perfect for the competition. Not because it the most interesting gourmet recipe I make, but because it is the easiest recipe on the planet! I also feel like soup levels the playing field in the kitchen. Absolutely ANYONE can make this in minutes.
I've been making this dish with joy for over 20 years, ever since my college days. The other major reason I chose this recipe is that it can be made with fresh or canned ingredients, making it versatile for all kinds of situations. It is a fantastic soup for backpacking when you have limited kitchen tools or supplies; and it is a great recipe for camping! It is also wonderful for those of you preparing meals on a budget at home. One of the other fantastic advantages of this soup is that it is allergy-friendly. It is gluten free, dairy free, egg free, nut free and soy free. A delicious recipe that most people can enjoy. For those people allergic or not partial to chickpeas, this soup works well with other white beans.
I prefer to cook fresh dried chickpeas and use fresh tomatoes in this recipe. However, if you are not near a market, or get home late, just grab a can of crushed organic tomatoes and two cans of chickpeas and you can be enjoying a protein-rich meal in under 15 minutes. You can also add in some more fresh vegetables if you want to make it more hearty. This soup also fares well with a dash of fresh chilli too!
I will say that if you want this soup to taste exactly like mine, the vegetable stock/broth that you use is important. Not all stocks were created equal. They really do vary in quality and taste. I always use Massel vegetable stock, which I believe is superior in quality and flavour. Massel stocks are vegan, gluten free, lactose free, kosher and free of MSG. When I don't make my own home made stock (I really do need to post that recipe) I always use Massel stocks. I actually prefer to use the stock cubes so I can control the strength. I use 1 stock cube for every 2 cups of filtered water.
This simple recipe makes a great little starter or a full meal. For a more filling meal I add in a scoop of brown rice, millet or quinoa into the soup, or enjoy it with some slices of thick crusty bread. Either way, this simple soup is a winner. Enjoy! From my table to yours.
“Mmmm, you’ll find tasty recipes like these in the HostelBookers.com Backpacker Recipe Guide.”