I was doing my grocery shopping at WinCo, and came across a big (and I mean big!) carton of these things. It’s a fresh garbanzo/chickpea! Never having seen these before, I immediately whipped out my phone to look up recipes. Turns out, there aren’t that many. There were a few recipes for preparing them like edamame as a snack or using them to make hummus, but the only thing I could find was to use them like a fresh pea in a stir fry. So I did.
First, you need to shell them, which is much more time-consuming than you might think. The pods split open, but the beans do not slip out easily so you have to pick each out and they don’t release all that easily. Oh, and take it from me, they don’t taste good raw (I had to try one!). The recipes I saw said just a few minutes cooking time, so I stir fried everything, added the sauce and the chickpeas, and thought they would cook quickly. They didn’t. After a few minutes they were still hard and raw tasting. I decided to cover the pan and let them cook for a few more minutes, but they still weren’t done. A few more minutes and they were still firm, but my carrots and broccoli were on the verge of serious overcooking, so I served dinner. Since the pan was covered, the sauce was more liquidy than I would have liked, but dinner was still good.
My verdict: I’ll probably try them again. Next time, I will use them in a curry and let them stew for about 15 or 20 minutes. Canned chickpeas become so delicate and creamy when cooked, and that’s what I was hoping would be the case with the fresh. I might also try to make a hummus spread with them.