Thursday, November 5, 2009

Chickpea Cassoulet with Tomatoes and Chard

This little number comes from one of those recipe cards we all used to receive in the mail -- you know the ones. Wrapped in cellophane, enticing you to subscribe to some kind of recipe-of-the-month club. I carried this recipe around for years and years, only to try it for the first time for this blog posting.

Technically, we haven't yet received any Swiss card in our Johnson's Backyard Garden farmboxes. I had some in my garden, however, and knowing that we would soon be getting chard out the wazoo, I decided to write this preemptive blog post.

Chickpea Cassoulet with Tomatoes and Chard
4 T olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 pinches red pepper flakes
2 tsp thyme (fresh), or 1/2 tsp dried
1 tsp rosemary, chopped
1/2 tsp paprika
pinch saffron (opt)
1 15-oz can chickpeas (or, about 2 c soaked and cooked from dried)
2 c tomatoes, chopped (I used canned)
1/2 tsp salt
1 bunch Swiss chard, leaves only
12 oz spaghetti
1/2 c Parmesan, grated

Preheat oven to 350. Heat a pot of water for cooking the spaghetti. Lightly oil a Dutch oven or other oven-safe skillet.

Heat 2 T olive oil in a skillet. Saute onion with garlic, red pepper flakes, and herbs. Cook until onions are soft, about 8 minutes.

Add chickpeas, 1/2 of their canned liquid (or, if you have soaked them from dried, then just 1/2 c water). Add tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Lower heat and simmer 15 minutes. Watch your pan carefully - if it becomes too dry, add more water to keep things moist.

Steam chard until bright green. Remove from water and chop coarsely.

Cook pasta and drain. Transfer pasta to the Dutch Oven. Add chickpea-tomato mixture, chard, and grated cheese. Toss until well mixed.

Drizzle remaining oil over top. Season with pepper. Cover with lid (or if using a cast iron skillet, cover with foil) and bake until warmed through, about 20 minutes.

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