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Chickpea and Wheatberry soup
This is another soup based on a seasoning combination I really like: cinnamon, saffron, coriander and bay.
About 1 1/2 cups dried chickpeas
About 1 1/2 cups wheat berries (I used kamut for no good reason, but any wheat berry or spelt should work)
2 tablespoons peanut oil or other cooking oil
2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
A bunch of cloves of garlic (I used 8-10)
2 sweet potatoes, each about 1/2 pound, coarsely chopped (washed but no need to peel)
1 quart vegetable stock plus 1 1/2 quarts water
2-4 bay leaves, or to taste
2 tablespoons coriander seeds (whole)
1 large or 2 regular cinnamon sticks
generous pinch of saffron
1 28-oz can of crushed or chopped tomatoes, or equivalent fresh chopped tomatoes
Finishing seasonings to taste
About 2 teaspoons ground medium or hot chilies
Pomegranate molasses, balsamic vinegar, or lemon juice
Pick over the chickpeas to remove any foreign materials (aka rocks). Rinse the chickpeas and wheatberries, and set aside.
In an 8 quart pressure cooker, saute the onions in the oil. While
they're cooking, separate the garlic cloves, and set them in the
microwave without peeling. Zap about 40 seconds. Remove the
skins (should come off easily now) and press through a garlic press.
Add the sweet potatoes and garlic to the pot with the onions, stirring
frequently, and when the onions are starting to color, add the stock
and whole spices in a bag or large tea strainer. Add the rinsed
chickpeas and wheat berries, and lock the lid and bring up to full
pressure. At 15 lbs pressure, it takes 40 minutes or so to fully
cook the chickpeas and wheatberries. Let cool down on its own
until the pressure drops, then check for doneness of the chickpeas and
wheat berries. If needed, cook a little longer without returning
to full pressure.
Stir in the tomatoes and pepper, adjusting seasonings to taste; my
batch, made with lightly salted stock, shone with just a touch of added
salt and some pomegranate molasses.
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