Zucchini and Chickpea Soup

5 Jan

One day while driving back from visiting my family in Rhode Island, we caught an interview on NPR with a cookbook author about her new book, Bean by Bean. She sounded awesome and had the most random name – Crescent Dragonwagon. (Of course we googled and read a really good story as to how she got that name.) We went to Porter Square Books soon after and bought Bean by Bean and this was the first recipe we tried. We used some of her suggestions and variations and came up with something that we love and have already made a few times. Give it a try!


  • 1 cup chickpeas, soaked overnight, or 2 cans of chickpeas
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 2 small zucchini, chopped
  • 1 carrot, cut and sliced thin
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp basmati rice
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
  • juice of 2 lemons


  • If using dried chickpeas, after soaking them overnight, put them in a large soup pot with 8 cups of water. Bring to a boil and then turn down heat and simmer, covered, until the chickpeas are tender, about 1 and 1/2 hours (but cooking time can be as long as 3 or more hours). If using canned chickpeas, add them, with their liquid, plus 2 cans of water to a soup pan and begin to simmer.
  • Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and carrot and saute, until the onions are soft, 6-8 minutes.
  • Lower heat and add garlic and cayenne, letting that cook for a few minutes, until the garlic becomes really fragrant.
  • Add the onion mixture from the skillet into the chickpeas in the soup pot. Then add in the cumin, allspice, tomato paste, zucchini and rice.
  • Cover and cook for 45 minutes on medium heat.
  • Add the parsley and cook for another 15 minutes.


Add in the juice of 2 lemons, stir well and serve. We ate the soup with toasted pitas, which were crunchy and delicious.


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