One challenge in cooking without dairy or meat is developing depth of flavor.
For this soup get your hands on a bulb of elephant garlic. You will know which one it is at the market because it is three times the size of a regular bulb. Elephant garlic is milder in flavor than regular garlic so it is a great choice for this recipe. If you don’t have any, don’t sweat it—any garlic is fine.
In order to get a deep rich broth you will need to go “low and slow” when you do your sauté. In other words, medium-low heat so that the garlic has time to infuse fully with the oil. As you build the soup on top of this base, what you end up with is a deep rich crave worthy vegetable broth.
Add 1/4 cup of olive oil to your soup pot, set the heat to medium-low and wait for the oil to shimmer. Once the oil is heated add 1/4 cup of diced elephant garlic. Saute the garlic in the oil for 5-7 minutes until it begins to soften, but not turn brown.
Turn the heat up to medium and add in one diced onion. Saute the onion in the oil until it becomes translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Next add in the two cans of rinsed chick peas, salt and fresh cracked pepper and cook for 5 minutes more. You really want to infuse those chick peas with the flavors in the oil.
Add in 6 cups of vegetable broth (or 6 cups of water and 1.5 tbsp Better than Bullion Vegetable Stock Base, my personal favorite) and bring to a simmer. Add the chopped kale into the broth and and simmer until the kale has wilted and flavors have melded, this will take about 5 more minutes. Serve with crusty bread for a hearty lunch or dinner, or a warm bowl for breakfast!
2 cans garbanzo beans rinsed and drained
1/4 cup diced elephant garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
1 diced onion
6 cups chopped kale, stems and spines removed
6 cups water
1.5 tbsp Better Than Bullion Vegetable Base *or sub 6 cups vegetable stock for water and bullion
Heat olive oil to a nice shimmer, turn the heat to medium-low and add in the elephant garlic. Saute for a few minutes without browning the garlic, if it is cooking too fast turn down the heat—you are looking for low and slow to pull out all the flavor.
Add onions and saute with garlic and oil until they turn translucent, 3-5 minutes. Add chick peas, salt and pepper to taste and cook for about 5 minutes. Add water and bullion or vegetable stock and bring to a simmer. Add in kale and simmer until the kale has wilted and the flavors have come together.
Author: Liza Curtis
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photos: Author’s Own