Saturday, February 26, 2011

CHICKPEA SOUP or GREEK REVITHOSOUPA (Ρεβιθόσουπα)


Revithia is the Greek word for chickpeas or garbanzo beans. I made revithosoupa for dinner today, and it was about time! We hadn't had it in a while, so it was good to eat a simple, meatless, warm bowl of soup. Revithosoupa is a filling Greek soup that is a standard in the Greek cooking repertoire. Some versions are kind of plain, others like mine are well flavored.

I like to mix in spices and vegetables, always trying to come up with a version that can produce applause from my family. I know that's a lost cause. They are not the sort to applaud a cook unless Emeril Lagasse himself enters our kitchen. I still keep trying, though. Plain or spiced up this soup is good. It's the chickpeas that give it a lot of favor. Ideally, it should be made with dried chickpeas that have been soaked overnight in water and a little bit of salt. That's when revithosoupa has a lot of flavor. Cooking it that way however, requires prior planning, and I don't always know the day before what I'll be making for tomorrow's dinner. In those cases, when I feel like making revithosoupa, I use canned chickpeas. So, that's why the "extra" ingredients and spices are needed, to bring out the flavor that is missing in the canned chickpeas.

Ingredients:
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cans of 15 ½ ounce canned chickpeas rinsed and drained.
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 3/4 cup celery diced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 1 leek, white and light green part only, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried mint or 1 teaspoon fresh
  • 2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 quart chicken broth
  • 2 cups water

Directions:
  • Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot. Add the onion, leek, garlic, celery and carrots. Sauté until the onions are soft.
  • Add the chickpeas, and stir them around for about two minutes or so and then season them with salt and pepper.
  • Add the liquid, oregano, rosemary and mint. Bring to a boil and cover, then lower the heat and simmer for about 45 minutes.
  • Add the parsley and lemon juice during the last 15 minutes of cooking. Serve while hot and enjoy!


This post will be submitted to Souper Sundays over at Kahakai Kitchen (http://kahakaikitchen.blogspot.com/).

3 comments:

  1. Greek Girl from QueensFebruary 27, 2011 at 9:48 AM

    Ahhh...this brings back lovely memories. In addition to the fasoulia that my nuna always made (along with the borekyas and the 'kloothya,' she always made a bit batch of revitho soup. My love of chick peas came from this soup - thanks for sharing, and for the nostalgia.

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  2. Your soup looks delicious--I am crazy for chickpeas and chickpea soups. Thanks so much for joining in this week at Souper Sundays-I hope you come back again soon.
    Aloha,

    Deb

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  3. This sounds delicious. I like chick peas so I think, I would love this. I am big into soups, presently, so I hope to make this, soon. Thanks for posting it.

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