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Saturday, April 13, 2013

Fresh Chick Peas


While fresh chick peas (also known as garbanzo beans) are in season, get them if you can. They are an inexpensive alternative to other spring legumes like fresh fava beans and green peas (I paid $1.69 per pound). The younger they are, the less starchy they'll be.

Buy them in their shell and eat them within a few days (before they dry out). After you remove the shells, use them like you would edamame, favas, or peas. Toss them with vinaigrette, stir them into risottos, or add them to salads, soups, and stir fries.

Because this recipe only has 3 ingredients, use the best you can find: the freshest chick peas, the finest extra virgin olive oil, and the crunchiest sea salt.

Each pound of fresh chick peas in their pods yield about a cup of cooked chick peas. 

2 pounds fresh chick peas in their pods, shelled, or 2 cups freshly shelled chick peas
Extra virgin oil oil
Coarse sea salt

Prepare a bowl of ice water and a large pot of boiling water.

To the boiling water add a generous pinch of sea salt and the shelled green chick peas. Simmer for 2 to 5 minutes, depending on their size, until just tender. Do not over-cook.

Transfer the cooked chick peas to the ice water (remove smaller ones first if sizes vary). Once all the chick peas are cooked and cooled, drain them and roll them in a clean kitchen until dry. Transfer them to a serving dish, drizzle with your best olive oil, and sprinkle with salt. Serve immediately.

Makes about 2 cups

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