Garbanzo Debacle

We had a disastrous time trying to make chickpeas from scratch yesterday.

We did the quick soak (boil, then soak an hour) before starting to cook.

They cooked for a good 2 hours or more but were still crunchy. It was getting late and Wally kept asking, "Is the food ready yet?" so finally we served dinner, picking around the crunchy chickpeas in this delicious dish from naturallyella (which is pretty close to something we often had growing up, without the quinoa). The battle went on after dinner and even after Wally was in bed. We still couldn't get the chickpeas to soften up.Alex pledged not to give up no matter how long it took. Periodically as the night wore on he would come in where I was working at the computer and say, "They're still fighting!"

It was literally a battle to the death (of the chickpeas) in the end. I heard "F&*ck!" and then a loud crash coming from the kitchen. I didn't get up to check but Alex came in a few minutes later to tell me what happened. He was reaching to transfer them to a third pot when he accidentally* upended the whole saucepan into the trashcan. Down went the sweet potatoes, tomatoes, rock-hard chickpeas and all. In general, I love buying beans in a bag rather than a can. It's so cheap, much healthier (no salt and no BPA in the lining), and they taste better too. This was the first time I tried chickpeas. I should have taken a picture of the end result but I was too annoyed at that point. (Now it makes me laugh.)



  1. I remember when i used to cook beans from scratch, eons ago living at home. Chickpeas were one of the hardest.

  2. hysterical! i've been making a similar stew to this - it's amazing. i'm so impressed with the self-made beans.

  3. Garbanzos can be a pain in the bum. The over night soak always seems to be more reliable, but requires that advanced planning that I rarely manage. I am assuming you didn't add any salt before they softened, as that can lengthen time, or even prevent them from softening at all. This does look like a good recipe. I will have to try it soon.

  4. I'm so glad to find out others find chickpeas tough as well. I think the overnight soak is more reliable in general. Advance planning! I can never even remember to get brown rice started early. We did add salt! Maybe that was the problem. Eli- what's your similar recipe?


    I've always used canned chickpeas though....i've never gotten rice down either.

    I'm a bit stressed out about Wally's sprouts. How are they doing? I say this because of my own disappointment one year when i got all these awesome sprouts and they proceeded to die a week later. They need tons of (artificial) light.

  6. Wow that recipe looks so good! Do you actually make it in the slow cooker (Do you have one?)

    Sprouts -- i have that same fear -- that all these great sprouts will die shortly. They do like like they're starting to wilt. We transplanted the Pixie Lupines today and they all seemed to collapse. I'm still happy that at least something grew. Alex took your note to mean any artificial light at all (standard lamps) but is that the case?

  7. I'm not sure. I think it is better than nothing - they sell full spectrum bulbs. You don't want to transplant the seedlings until they've developed a few set of leaves - that is another way to kill them (also something i found out)- you just have to pluck out the weakest looking ones. Best thing is that you can start over again!

  8. Oh I didn't realize that -- I thought it was just based on how many inches they've grown. Thank you!


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