Some months ago I wanted to prepare a Greek side dish with giant beans called “Gigantes”. As I realized I missed the beans and I saw a can of chickpeas instead, I thought that this would be great as well. My family loved this so much, that I prepared this several times and would like to write it down to give this further to my children.
As mentioned this versatile recipes can be adapted to the ingredients you have on hand and also on the time you may invest.
The fastest and easiest version is using canned chickpeas, canned tomatoes and finish cooking directly in the skillet.
If you may invest more time you may use dried chickpeas or giant beans and finish the recipe in the oven; as the original recipe for “Gigantes” asks for.
- 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas (or one cup dried chickpeas)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil (to taste)
- 1 small onion, minced
- 2 cups chopped celery, with leaves
- 1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes (or pound fresh tomatoes diced)
- salt and pepper
- chili (optional) or cayenne pepper (optional)
- Skip this step if you use canned chickpeas. If not place the very well rinsed chickpeas in a large bowl with abundant water to soak for 8 hours or overnight, then drain them. Place the chickpeas in a pot with enough water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium low, and simmer until the beans are tender. This takes about 11⁄2-2 hours. Check water and if ready during cooking time.
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and cook the onion and celery, stirring, for a few minutes only just to soften. Add tomatoes and season with salt, pepper and chili. Remove from the heat.
- Now add drained and cooked chickpeas and simmer slowly for about 15 minutes or until the liquid is adsorbed.
- Check seasoning again and serve.
For this recipe you can use garlic instead of onion and/or giant beans instead of chickpeas.
If you have time and you wish even a better result cook the chickpeas not until completely trough. Place them in a mold and toss with the tomatoes sauce. Cover with foil and cook in the preheated oven for about 1 hour. Serve with additional olive oil.
Variants: Dried or canned pulses/ chickpeas or giant beans/ canned or fresh tomatoes/ onion or garlic/ finish cooking in skillet or oven. If you like you can serve this with lemon wedges.