Pasta e Ceci (Italian Chickpea and Pasta Stew)

Background and History

Pasta e Ceci, also known as Chickpea and Pasta Stew, is a traditional Italian dish with roots in Roman and Southern Italian cuisine. This hearty and flavorful stew showcases the simplicity and versatility of Italian cooking. The combination of pasta and chickpeas creates a nutritious and satisfying meal that has been enjoyed for generations.

Ingredients

1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 celery stalk, finely chopped

1 carrot, peeled and diced

1 can (14 oz) crushed tomatoes

6 cups vegetable broth

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 bay leaf

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup small pasta (such as ditalini or small shells)

Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)

Grated Parmesan cheese (optional, for serving)

Instructions

Soak Chickpeas

Rinse and soak the dried chickpeas in water overnight. Drain before cooking.

Sauté Aromatics

In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add chopped onion, garlic, celery, and carrot. Sauté until the vegetables are softened.

Add Tomatoes and Broth

Stir in crushed tomatoes, vegetable broth, oregano, thyme, bay leaf, salt, and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil.

Cook Chickpeas

Add soaked chickpeas to the pot. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 1.5 to 2 hours or until chickpeas are tender.

Cook Pasta

Add the small pasta to the pot and cook until al dente according to the package instructions.

Adjust Seasoning

Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if needed. Remove the bay leaf.

Serve: Ladle the stew into bowls, garnish with fresh parsley, and optionally sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese.

Nutrition Facts

(Per Serving – based on 6 servings)

Calories: ~300

Protein: 12g

Fat: 8g

Carbohydrates: 50g

Fiber: 10g

Notes

Customize the stew by adding spinach, kale, or other greens for extra nutrition.

Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil before serving for added richness.

This dish tastes even better the next day, making it great for leftovers.

Allergy Warning

Gluten: Ensure you choose a gluten-free pasta if you have gluten allergies.

Check the vegetable broth and crushed tomatoes for any allergens or additives if you have specific dietary restrictions.

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