Fall is officially here, the leaves are colorful, the mornings are cold and the stove and oven get some over time. This soup is heavy and spicy making it a perfect meal on a cold evening or after you come home soaked because your umbrella broke. It does require some planning ahead because you need to soak the chickpeas overnight but when this is done you do the following:
Wash chickpeas and discard soaking water, transfer to a pig pot adding 8-10 cups of water, 2 dry chillies, 3 crushed garlic cloves, stems from 1/2 a bunch of Cilantro (you will you use the leaves later) and salt. Cook until tender with the lid closed.
Meanwhile, pre-heat oven to 375 F, prick a few holes in the eggplant and roast it for 40 minutes. Let cool, peel off the skin and roughly chop.
When chickpeas are done, strain reserving the liquid. Discard garlic, peppers and cilantro.
Heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil in a smaller pot, add 2 chopped shalots, 1 crushed clove of garlic, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp ground coriander, pinch of smoked paprika (1/4 tsp), pinch of turmeric and 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes and saute for a couple of minutes until shalots are translucent and spices fragrant. Add the eggplant and 2/3 of the chickpeas, stir. Add 6 cups of the cooking liquid and simmer for 10 minutes. Puree with a stick blender or if your food processor. Add remaining chickpeas, 1 chopped fresh hot pepper and the finely chopped 1/2 bunch of cilantro leaves. Add a squeeze of lime juice.
Serve with sour cream and fresh chopped mint.
Full ingredient list:
1 cup dry chickpeas
4 cloves of garlic
1/2 bunch cilantro
2 dry chillies
turmeric, smoked paprica, ground coriander, cumin, chili flakes, salt, olive oil
1 fresh chili pepper
juice from 1/4 lime
fresh mint and sour cream