I cracked the spine of a cookbook today for the first time in a long time, and it was Susanna Trilling's Seasons of My Heart.
Gag-inducing title aside, it's a great cookbook, focusing on the diversity of Oaxacan cuisine. Today I was trying to use up some ancient items from the pantry and my darting eyeball's gaze landed on a 3/4-full bag of chickpeas. Gotcha, you ceci monkeys. Here is my adaptation of Lupe's Stewed Garbanzo Beans (p.203):
guisado de garbanzo istmeño.
400g chickpeas, soaked overnight (or 5 cups canned)
water to cover
1/2 medium white onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
400g canned peeled tomatoes, chopped or pureed
1 cup chicken stock or roasted vegetable stock
1 medium white or yellow onion, chopped
8 garlic cloves
1 ripe plantain or 1 not-so-ripe banana, cubed
2 tbsp. pickled jalapeños
The general idea here is to cook the chickpeas first (if you're not using canned) with the onions and 3 cloves garlic, adding water as necessary to keep beans barely covered, maybe 30-45 minutes, until al dente, then drain them and place them in a good stew pot. Add the tomatoes, onion, 8 cloves garlic, and 1 cup chicken stock to the chickpeas and simmer on low heat.
While the chickpeas are simmering, remove the meat from the chorizo casings and fry it for 5-7 minutes in a smallish skillet. Add the browned chorizo to the beans, leaving the oil from the chorizo in the pan. Fry the plantain in the same pan (with the chorizo oil) until browned, then add to the beans. Add anything that's still laying around, then cook the assembled stew on low heat for another 30-60 minutes, or until beans are completely tender. Puree if you want a bisque-y kind of thing. I did.
Notes: This was unexpectedly fantastic. Something I might change would be the pickled jalapeños...kind of a mmm jarring taste against the comforting roundness of the guisado. My jalapeños were also 1) a bit old and 2) European. I think some reg'lar fresh green chiles diced would be a better idea. I also turned the leftovers into a sauce for pork tenderloin for unexpected dinner guests Phil and Andy, paired with a reduced ancho/roasted garlic broth: out. of. sight. Literally, in about 5 minutes. Gone. Then we got really high and listened to a bunch of Wu-Tang. Good night!
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