Despite its simplicity, this soup is packed with flavor and a perfect way to welcome the new season. I used dried chickpeas, soaked them overnight, and cooked them in a little water, cinnamon, sweet paprika, and coriander the day before I made the soup. It added a very subtle additional layer of flavor but is by no means necessary. You can also use canned chickpeas, if that is what you have on hand.
4 cloves of garlic peeled
1/3 cup good extra virgin olive oil
2 fresh rosemary sprigs
1 1/3 cup canned imported Italian plum tomatoes, cut up, with their juice
1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas (cook in water with a little cinnamon, sweet paprika, and coriander until soft), drained
2 cups beef stock (preferably homemade). I am sure you could use chicken or vegetable broth as well.
Black pepper, ground fresh from the mill
Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
Put the olive oil and garlic in a large stock pot and sauté on medium heat until the garlic starts to turn a golden color. Remove the cloves from the oil. Add the rosemary sprigs, tomatoes, and cook for five minutes. Add the cooked chickpeas and season with salt and pepper. Stir and coat the chickpeas. Next, add the broth and bring the soup to a boil. Boil the soup for 15 minutes. Taste. Add more salt and pepper if necessary. Serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
(Recipe adapted from Marcella Hazan’s Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking)