When your husband decides to become a vegetarian — albeit a fish-eating one — but your teenage boys crave chicken and beef, what’s a wife and mom to do?
Make Peanut Butter and Chickpea Soup!
Over the past few months, I’ve spent a lot of time adapting recipes and cooking up ways to satisfy Tim’s new appetite for meatless meals and my boys’ big-time hunger for meat. In my cookbook, No Whine with Dinner, we have a recipe for Piping-Hot Peanut Butter Soup that’s made with chicken and rice. My kids love it, so I decided to modify it a bit by swapping the chicken with chickpeas (garbanzo beans) and the rice with farro (I’m currently on a farro kick). This soup is hearty, nutritious, filled with fiber, and best of all, it’s a definite palate pleaser!
Whether you’re a vegetarian or not, you and your kids are going to adore this luscious, hearty winter soup. It’s filled with an array of great-tasting, nutrient-rich ingredients: peanut butter, bell peppers, chickpeas, and farro.
Farro is an ancient grain that’s made a comeback recently. It’s clearly a trendy whole grain since Trader Joe’s now offers it in a quick-cook, 10 minute version. I love this product. TJs also makes a 10-minute bulgur and a 10-minute barley. Talk about an easy way to get more whole grains on the table.
- Serves: 6
- Serving size: 1 generous cup
- Calories: 310
- Fat: 15g
- Saturated fat: 2.5g
- Carbohydrates: 34g
- Sodium: 670mg
- Fiber: 7g
- Protein: 12g
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 small onion, cut into ¼-inch dice (about 1 cup)
- 1 medium red or orange bell pepper, cut into ¼-inch dice (about 1½ cups)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- One 32-ounce container all-natural vegetable broth
- One 15-ounce can tomato sauce
- ½ teaspoon curry powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon celery seed
- ⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- One 15-ounce can Garbanzos (AKA chickpeas), drained and rinsed
- ⅔ cup creamy peanut butter
- ½ cup 10-minute farro
- Roasted peanuts, chopped, optional
- Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven or saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 7 minutes. Add the bell pepper and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until the pepper softens, an additional 5 minutes.
- Stir in the broth, tomato sauce, curry powder, cumin, chili powder, cinnamon, celery seed, and pepper. Cover, raise the heat, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the flavors meld, about 15 minutes.
- Add the chickpeas, peanut butter, and farro and stir well until the peanut butter melts into the soup. Cover, return to a simmer, and cook until the farro is tender, about 10 minutes. Season with kosher salt and pepper to taste. Top each serving with peanuts as desired.
I couldn’t resist sharing this photo. This is what it looked like when I set up to take a photo of the soup. My food photography — which I do with my iPhone 5 — often entails laying out some old barn board and a bunch of different fabrics and gathering up an array of pretty dishes. I use a white tri-board to bounce light back onto the subject. In other words, I make a mess.