How do you roast chickpeas while keeping them tender?
June 23, 2019 10:49 PM   Subscribe

I’ve come to really like Alison Roman’s “Sheet-Pan Chicken With Chickpeas, Cumin and Turmeric”, especially the chickpeas. A key part of the recipe is that the chickpeas don’t get that crunchy, as they soak in the rendering chicken fat. I would love to roast chickpeas the same way without the chicken, but am not sure how to keep them similarly tender? Intuitively, I imagine you use less time and add some liquid to the pan, but if you have more specific advice it would be welcome!
posted by Going To Maine to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
 
I've been having the same conundrum. Two thoughts: are you roasting on a wide metal pan, so the chickpeas can get hot and spread out to minimize juice/fat soaking time? I've also got this recipe from Smitten Kitchen to try--she roasts them separately and then adds them to a carrot salad. Her recipes are usually bang-on for me, so I bet this does it.
posted by stillmoving at 12:10 AM on June 24


When doing the sheet pan chicken method, I use a big shet pan, and they are perfect. I don't remember whether I used a sheet pan or a deeper roasting dish the time I tried without the chicken, but the final product was quite dry. It didn't even have the decency to be nicely crispy and crunchy, alas.
posted by Going To Maine at 12:14 AM on June 24


I can’t access the chicken recipe so I’m speculating, but without the chicken you might not even need the oven. Have you tried pan-frying the chickpeas in a little olive oil? When you tried roasting them without chicken, what did you add instead?
posted by jon1270 at 2:38 AM on June 24 [1 favorite]


Sometimes I roast them in veggie stock (not covering them). You need to turn them so the tops don't hey dried out. It's definitely an experiment and I haven't found the best approach yet because turning lots of chickpeas is tedious.
posted by kokaku at 4:09 AM on June 24


The chicken juices will have a lot of fat content as well, which you are losing. I would add maybe 1/4 cup of olive oil as well as the extra liquid that you mentioned.

You could also try covering the pan in aluminium foil for the first part of cooking, and this will help keep the chickpeas from getting too dry. When to remove the foil and let the beans dry a bit is something that will take some trial and error, but I'd guess to leave 15 minutes at the end.
posted by cotterpin at 5:10 AM on June 24


Yes, the answer is olive oil, and a lot of it. This recipe from Food 52 has become a favorite, and the chickpeas turn out soft and delicious. When I make it I add a bunch of chopped broccoli rabe.
posted by msbubbaclees at 6:40 AM on June 24 [4 favorites]


I went through a phase of roasting a lot of chickpeas this past winter, and aside from using a sheet tray (either a half sheet or a quarter sheet) and a bit of oil, the only thing that seemed to matter for me for eventual texture was just how long I let them go. I'd go off the Smitten Kitchen recipe stillmoving pointed to, and test partway through.
posted by Making You Bored For Science at 7:01 AM on June 24


Thanks for all the good answers!
For thise who can't see the original recipe and needed a sense of it, it calls for 2 cans of chickpeas drizzled with two tablespoons of olive oil (plus about 1.6 tbsps of spices), balanced against 4 lbs of chicken that are coated in a yogurt, lemon juice, and turmeric marinade.
posted by Going To Maine at 7:38 AM on June 24


If you want tender and not crunchy or dry, try sautéing the garbanzos in an herbed/spiced olive oil, then braise them in a smallish Dutch oven or covered saucepan with enough stock to cover. The quick sauté will brown them, but the steam and moisture from the stock will keep them tender.
posted by a halcyon day at 3:30 PM on June 24


I fry chickpeas like this:

Rinse the chickpeas and put them in a wide flat frying pan on the hob, on a medium/low heat and leave them there for 10 minutes. Don't stir. This is to dry them out a little. Then add 2 tbsp olive oil, shake the chickpeas around to mix them (they might have stuck during the drying process, but they'll shake off) and then leave them frying for another 10 minutes. Don't stir! Then add the spices, stir (they'll be crispy enough to not break apart now) and fry for a couple more minutes (but be careful because the spices can burn)
posted by BinaryApe at 11:30 PM on June 25


Hey all,

Just wanted to say that I tried a variant of the food52 method (olive oil, onion, and the original recipe's spice mix) and it came through like a champ! There are lots of things I will have fun tweaking, but my problem is 100% solved!
posted by Going To Maine at 12:45 AM on July 2


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