Pasta e Ceci, also known as Pasta with Chickpeas, is a classic Italian dish that is both hearty and comforting.
Made with simple ingredients like pasta, chickpeas, tomatoes, and herbs, this dish is perfect for a cozy weeknight dinner.
Let’s dive into the recipe and create a bowl of deliciousness!
- 1 cup dried chickpeas (or 2 cans of cooked chickpeas)
- 8 oz short pasta (such as ditalini, small shells, or elbows)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes
- 4 cups vegetable broth or water
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Grated Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)
- Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish (optional)
Prepare the Chickpeas:
If using dried chickpeas, rinse them under cold water and soak them overnight in a large bowl of water. Drain and rinse the chickpeas before using.
If using canned chickpeas, drain and rinse them thoroughly under cold water. Set aside.
Cook the Onion and Garlic:
In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic, and sauté until softened and fragrant, about 5 minutes.
Add the Chickpeas and Tomatoes:
Add the chickpeas to the pot with the onion and garlic, and stir to combine.
Pour in the diced tomatoes (with their juices) and stir well to combine all the ingredients.
Simmer the Mixture:
Add the vegetable broth or water to the pot, along with the dried rosemary and oregano. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
Bring the mixture to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low and let it cook gently for about 20-30 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld together and the chickpeas to soften.
Cook the Pasta:
While the chickpea mixture is simmering, cook the pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain the pasta and set it aside.
Combine the Pasta and Chickpea Mixture:
Once the chickpeas are soft and the flavors have melded together, add the cooked pasta to the pot. Stir well to combine, ensuring that the pasta is coated in the flavorful chickpea mixture.
Ladle the Pasta e Ceci into bowls and garnish with grated Parmesan cheese and chopped fresh parsley, if desired.
Serve the Pasta e Ceci hot, accompanied by crusty bread for soaking up the delicious sauce.
For added flavor, you can sauté some pancetta or bacon with the onion and garlic before adding the chickpeas.
Feel free to customize the herbs and spices based on your preferences. You can add a pinch of red pepper flakes for some heat or fresh herbs like basil or thyme for extra freshness.
Leftover Pasta e Ceci can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Simply reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave before serving.
Enjoy the comforting flavors of Italy with this hearty and satisfying Pasta e Ceci recipe. Whether you’re craving a cozy weeknight meal or looking to impress guests with a simple yet delicious dish, Pasta e Ceci is sure to hit the spot. Buon appetito!