Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Now I know just as well as the next person that garbanzo beans (or chick peas, whichever moniker you prefer) don't originate from tin cans or Sizzler salad bars. And yet, that's pretty much how people are associated with them in their whole form - right? So there I was at my local supermarket the other day (not even the farmers market or a specialty produce market... just the big ol' chain store down the street), and what to my wonderous eyes did appear? A huge bin of garbanzo beans - in the raw. I had to buy some just on general principle, even though I had no idea what to do with them (that's what google is for, isn't it?).
Turns out, raw garbanzos (which don't resemble their yellowed canned counterparts in the least) are not that an unusual of a find in locales where they are grown (in the U.S., that's largely in Southern California) - and in fact, whole branches of the legumes show up in produce sections on a regular basis. But that was all news to me.
So, after a little research (thanks google), I found out that there's really nothing to cooking raw garbanzos, and in fact, one of the tastiest ways is the simplest. All that is required is coating them with a little olive oil (I used my new favorite, the pecan wood-smoked olive oil I raved about in an earlier post), seasoning them with salt and pepper, and throwing them on a hot grill in a tinfoil packet. A couple of shakes of the packet and 10 minutes later, voila - scrumptious little nuggets of garbanzo goodness. You pop them out of their shells when they are cool enough to handle - eating them like you would edamame at the sushi bar.
So keep an eye out - if they magically appear at a market near you, don't pass them by. A healthier, easier, tastier snack is just moments in the making!