Back to soup and specifically a vegetable soup this week. The mac and cheese recipes of the last few weeks were delicious, but I was definitely missing my soup and lots of veggies.
This week’s choice is “St. Joseph Chickpea Soup.” Chickpeas have a long association with St. Joseph, and are often served in various forms on his feast day of March 19. My grandmother had a strong devotion to St. Joseph, one that I’ve kept up, seeking his intercession to become the man whom God desires me to be.
St. Teresa of Ávila had a very strong devotion to St. Joseph, incidentally – I think that’s one of the many reasons that I am drawn to her and to her Carmelite spirituality.
I’ve made a number of changes to the original recipe in this version, mostly by including some extra small red and yellow peppers and half of a green pepper that needed using up, omitting the celery, and swapping out the water and bouillon cube for gluten-free, low-sodium vegetable stock. I’m not including the extra peppers in the recipe below, since they might be a bit much for some, but feel free to add in bits and pieces of whatever leftover vegetables you might have on hand to give the soup some extra flavor, color, and body – peppers, potatoes, and celery are good choices, as are perhaps greens like kale or spinach.
If you don’t have time to soak chickpeas over night, two 15 oz cans of chickpeas drained and well-rinsed will do just as well.
St. Joseph Chickpea Soup
1x 1lb bag of chickpeas, soaked overnight then rinsed and drained OR 2x 15 oz cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2x 32 oz boxes gluten-free, low-sodium vegetable stock
1x 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 large onion, chopped
2 carrots, sliced into thin rounds
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
4 tbsp olive oil
1 bay leaf
Salt & pepper, to taste
Parmesan cheese, to serve
Put the soaked, drained, and rinsed chickpeas in a stockpot with the vegetable stock. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add in the remaining ingredients stir to combine. Return to a boil.When the pot boils again, reduce the heat to medium and simmer, uncovered, for between an hour and an hour and 15 minutes, stirring from time to time, until the chickpeas are cooked through. (You may need more or less time, depending on the age of your chickpeas.) When the chickpeas are done, take the pot off the heat. Remove the bay leaf, and serve the soup hot. Parmesan cheese on top makes a lovely topping.
Adapted from Brother Victor-Antoine D'Avila-Latourrette, Twelve Months of Monastery Soups (1996), Liguori Publications