Chickpeas are one of my favourite things to use in veggie/vegan meals (a lot of the meat-free meals I cook at home end up being vegan because my partner is lactose intolerant). I always used tinned, because I generally don't have the time or energy to deal with soaking dried beans, but I've heard some people say that using dried beans is better. But equally others say there's nothing wrong with tinned.
I actually have a favourite brand of tinned chickpeas (Napolina
) and I try and stock up on them when they're on offer, as they're quite expensive compared with other tinned chickpeas - but I like them because they are large and soft. East End brand chickpeas
are also pretty good, and they're a lot cheaper. I've found some own brand tinned chickpeas to be small and hard and not a pleasant texture for my palate.
I make many different versions of veggie chilli, but this one was inspired by a veggie chilli that I had in a restaurant once. Serves 4Ingredients
1 onion, thickly sliced
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
2 peppers (I used a yellow pepper and a red pepper, but it doesn't really matter), deseeded and cut into 1cm-ish chunks
1 medium courgette, halved and cut into thick slices
1 heaped tsp ground cumin
1 tsp paprika (optional)
1 pinch of dried chilli flakes (alternatively you could use 1 tsp chilli powder or a fresh chilli, finely chopped)
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 400g tin chopped tomatoes
400ml vegetable stock
1 400g tin chickpeas
1 400g tin red kidney beans (or other beans of your choice - borlotti, canellini, black eyed, mixed etc.)
8 - 10 sundried tomatoes (optional)
Salt and pepper to seasonMethod
Heat the olive oil in a pan over a medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and peppers and cook gently for 5 - 10 minutes until starting to soften. Add the courgette and cook for a minute more. Add the spices, stir well and cook for another minute or two. Add the tomato puree, tomatoes and stock. Bring to the boil briefly, then turn down to a simmer and cook for about 20 minutes. Add the chickpeas, beans and sundried tomatoes (if using). Simmer for 10 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. The idea is that the courgette should be soft but still (mostly) holding together.
Serve with rice, bread, jacket potato or cous cous.