Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Potaje de Garbanzos • Chickpea Stew
Time to clear out the freezer. I found a ham bone, 1/2 a large Spanish chorizo, some frozen butternut squash and frozen green bell pepper... hmmmm.... check the refrigerator....onions, garlic, potatoes, carrots.... okay Chickpea Stew... check the pantry... oh noooo! No garbanzo beans. Easily resolved. Send the hubby to the market. Here we go.
1 lb dry garbanzo beans (chickpeas) soaked overnight
1 ham bone or two ham hocks
Spanish chorizo (whatever you have on hand be it 2 small links or one large one)
2 medium sized onions, chopped
1 bell pepper, quartered
1 bay leaf
1 can tomato sauce (8 oz)
6-8 garlic cloves, pressed
2 medium sized potatoes, quartered
1 carrot, sliced
3 to 4 cups worth of calabaza or butternut squash cut in large chunks
salt to taste
The big question in all this is how much water to use, and since I eyeball all of it, I'll just tell you to fill a large pot with plenty of water, enough to cover all your ingredients (including the ham bone) and then some, you can always let it reduce by simmering uncovered or you can always add more water if thickens too much. Just check it periodically.
Okay so on high heat bring your large pot of water to boil with the garbanzo beans, ham and bay leaf and a drizzle of olive oil. After a few minutes this will start to foam, you can remove the foam with a slotted spoon. While this boils prepare your other ingredients. Now some people may want to sautee the onions and pepper and garlic and chorizo with the tomato sauce, but I just drop them in the boiling pot. So whichever way you prefer, go ahead and add the mentioned ingredients to your pot. You are going to have to let this boil on medium heat for about 2 hours (covered) after this time, check the tenderness of your garbanzos and the level of the water. Remove your ham or ham hocks at this time and pick off any meat that you may want to put back into the stew. If your garbanzos are still hard, you need to cook longer, if they are tender then go ahead and add your potatoes, carrots and calabaza (squash). Bring to a gentle boil, cover and cook for another hour or so.