African Chickpea Soup

This is not a soup that you can whip up at the last minute. You have to make the sweet potato broth first. I did find this soup a little bland, so I added some vegetarian “chicken” broth to it, and that seemed to help. My 8 year old really liked this, but he said I could have chopped the greens into smaller pieces (agreed). This soup was good, but it was even better the next day!

rating: 8.5

African Chickpea Soup
(Southern Living, Feb. 2015)

serves 8


2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper- I omitted
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
Pinch of ground turmeric
4 cups Sweet Potato Broth (recipe below)
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 bunch fresh mustard greens, chopped
2 (15-oz.) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
Garnish: dried crushed red pepper


1. Sauté garlic in hot oil in a large saucepan over medium heat 1 minute; add 1 tsp. dried crushed red pepper and next 4 ingredients. Cook 1 to 2 more minutes or until fragrant. (Toasting the spices opens up their flavor.) Stir in Sweet Potato Broth, coconut milk, and greens. Bring to a gentle boil; add chickpeas. Reduce heat to low, and simmer about 1 1/2 hours or until greens are soft. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Sweet Potato Broth


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced
3 celery ribs, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 large sweet potato, peeled and quartered
5 whole cloves
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
6 cups water


Heat olive oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add onion, celery, and carrot. Cook, stirring often, 8 to 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add sweet potato, cloves, desired amount of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, and water. Increase heat to high, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer 30 to 35 minutes or until sweet potato is tender. Discard cloves. Let mixture stand 15 minutes. Process, in batches, in a food processor or blender until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Use immediately, or cool completely, and refrigerate in an airtight container up to 5 days.

Note: You can freeze cooked and cooled mixture up to 2 months.

photo (7)

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