Minestra de Ceci

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(Italian chickpea and pasta soup)

Minestra di ceci is a simple and nourishing soup from the Tuscan region of Italy. It goes together quickly and is great for a rainy day. Serve it with a nice chunk of crusty bread for a full meal.

4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

  • Chickpeas, cooked and rinsed -- 2 cups
  • Stock or water -- 5 cups
  • Olive oil -- 3 tablespoons
  • Fresh rosemary, chopped -- 1 small sprig
  • Garlic, minced -- 2-3 cloves
  • Tomatoes, chopped -- 1 cup
  • Salt and pepper -- to taste
  • Soup pasta (see variations) -- 1/2 cup

Method

  1. Puree half the chickpeas with 1 cup of the stock or water in a blender or food processor. Set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium flame. Add the garlic and rosemary and sauté until the garlic just begins to brown.
  3. Stir in the tomatoes and simmer for 3-5 minutes. Add the remaining stock, the chickpea puree and the remaining whole chickpeas. Season to taste with salt and pepper and simmer for 10 more minutes.
  4. Add the pasta and bring to a light boil until the pasta is cooked through, 8-10 minutes. Serve with crusty bread.

Variations

  • Use any small pasta for this soup: orzo, macaroni, shells. Or break spaghetti or capellini into small pieces.
  • Stir in 2 cups chopped fresh spinach or chard in the last 5 minutes if you like.
Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (4 votes)

Nice simple soup

4

I made this with spinach and it came out nicely. I used a box of chicken broth from Whole foods. I used cherry tomatoes that cut in half. This soup presents many opportunities for experimentation!