Tag: Chickpeas

Legendary Dishes | Bazzoffia (soup of love – bean and vegetable soup with bread and cheese)


This summer vegetable soup from central Italy is celebrated in the Sezze recipe book where they describe it as the ‘soup of love’. Ideally it is made with all fresh produce from the field and garden. The addition of bread, eggs and cheese turn it into a meal.

The authors of Ti Racconto una Ricetta di Sezze (I’ll Tell You a Recipe of Sezze) describe the dish. ‘Bazzoffia is a spring soup typical of Sezze and Priverno, two villages of the Lepini Mountains that compete for the authorship of this dish. The bazzoffia, whose name recalls a certain heterogeneity of ingredients, is made with seasonal vegetables from the April season during which are the last artichokes, the first beans and new peas, as well as lettuce and chard. Today actually with availability all year round of ingredients it is possible to make it every day. The secret of the success of bazzoffia is the long but sweet cooking which leaves legumes and vegetables intact.’

  • 1.5 litres water
  • 300 g fresh peas
  • 300 g fresh broad beans
  • 250 g chard, chopped coarsely
  • 4 eggs
  • 12 artichoke hearts, cut into strips
  • 170 g stale bread, sliced in four
  • 120 g pecorino cheese, grated
  • 100 g onion, chopped small
  • 30 ml olive oil
  • 5 g black pepper
  • 5 g salt

Pour the oil into a large pot over a gentle heat, add the onion, peas and broad beans, stir to embrace the oil, add the artichokes and chard. Pour in the water and add salt. Cook covered over a low heat for 90 minutes.

When all the vegetables are cooked, poach the eggs in the broth. Place a slice of bread in each bowl, put a poached egg on top, pour the soup and sprinkle with cheese. Season.

Legendary Dishes | Topik (chickpea-potato-tahini balls stuffed with caramelized onions)


This is a very popular Armenian dish, appreciated also in Anatolia. It is served cold but it can also be served hot, baked in a 180ºC oven for 45 minutes.

Six Portions

  • 1.5 kg onions, cut in half, sliced thin
  • 400 g potatoes, boiled whole until cooked, peeled, mashed
  • 400 g chickpeas, soaked in water for 8 hours, boiled until soft, mashed
  • 250 g + 35 g tahini
  • 25 g currants
  • 25 g pine nuts
  • 2 tsp + 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp + 1 salt salt
  • 1 tsp + 1 tsp sugar
  • Cinnamon, to garnish
  • Olive oil, to garnish

Combine potatoes with chickpeas and one teaspoon each of cinnamon, salt and sugar, 35 g of tahini. Form into a dough, set aside.

Sauté a third of the onions in a very large pan with a teaspoon of salt on low heat, cover. When the onions start to soften and release water add the second batch, increase the heat, cover. Add the third batch, increase the heat a little more, cover. The purpose is to soften the onions, release their water content and reduce them to a quarter of their original quantity. When the onions are completely soft, remove the lid and cook over a medium-high heat. The operation can take more than a hour, depending on the quality of the onions.

Add currants, pine nuts, 2 teaspoons of cinnamon, one teaspoon each of allspice, black pepper and sugar to the onions, mix well. Cool, add the tahini and mix thoroughly.

Cut 6 pieces of clingfilm approximately 20 cm x 20 cm. Divide the chickpea-potato and onion-tahini mixures into 6 equal portions. Take a portion of the chickpea-potato mixture, and spread it flat into a round about ½ cm thick on the clingfilm. Place a portion of the onion-tahini mixture in the middle. Hold the clingfilm on all four sides and close up to make a round ball, twist the corners and turn over on a large plate or tray. Repeat with remaining mixtures. Transfer to the refrigerator for three hours or overnight.

Twelve Portions


  • 800 g potatoes, peeled, boiled, mashed
  • 750 g chickpeas, soaked in water overnight, boiled, mashed
  • 75 ml tahini
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp sugar


  • 3 kg onions, halved, sliced thin
  • 500 g tahini
  • 3 tbsp currants
  • 3 tbsp pine nuts
  • 4 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp allspice
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • Cinnamon to garnish
  • Olive oil to garnish

For the shell combine potatoes with chickpeas and tahini, work in the cinnamon, salt and sugar, knead a little to form a dough.

For the filling sauté onions in a very large frying pan with salt on very low heat, stir from time to time. The onions should cook down to almost a quarter of the original quantity.

Add currants, pine nuts, cinnamon, allspice, black pepper and sugar to the onions, and mix well. Once cool add tahini and mix.

Prepare 12 pieces of clingfilm (approximately 20 x 20cm). Divide the chickpea / potato dough into 12 equal portions. Take a portion and spread on a stretch film in a round manner, it should be about ½ cm thick. Place 1/12th of the onion mixture in the middle, then hold from all four sides of the stretch film and close up to make  round ball, twist the corners and turn over on a large plate or tray. Do the same with the rest of the mixes.

Transfer to the refrigerator, chill for two hours. Ideally topik tastes much better the next day. The surplus may be kept in the refrigerator for up to a week or frozen for up to two months.

INDIGENOUS INGREDIENTS =  Allspice | Chickpeas | Currants | Onions | Pine Nuts | Potatoes | Tahini


Legendary Dishes | Cocido Catalan (chickpea, meat and vegetable casserole)


The slow-cooked casserole of the Iberian peninsula was once an elaborate affair consisting of three dishes. The first dish was vermicelli served in the clear stock from the long cooking of meat bones. It was followed by a dish of beans and vegetables cooked in the stock. The third dish contained meats slow-cooked in the stock. This is a basic version of the modern cocido Catalan.

1 litre water
650 g potatoes, peeled, cut into large pieces
600 g red peppers, sliced
500 g chorizo, skinned, chopped thickly
500 g plum tomatoes, mashed
400 g white beans / chickpeas, soaked overnight in bread soda, boil until tender (or pre-cooked, available in jars)
300 g onions, chopped
15 ml olive oil
15 g Spanish sweet smoked paprika
5 g bouillon powder
5 g saffron, soaked in hot water for 15 minutes
5 g black pepper
Salt, pinch

Put tomatoes, water and bouillon into a pot and bring to the boil, simmer for 15 minutes until tomatoes break up. Combine beans, chorizo, onions, paprika, peppers, potatoes and seasonings into a deep casserole dish, sprinkle with olive oil. Bake in a low oven, around 150°C for 60 minutes. Add tomato liquid and saffron water, increase heat to 180ºC and bake for 30 minutes.