I've never been to Greece but imagine it as a place of warmth, fire, breeze, and gusts. This rich and satisfying soup was also what brought me to sweet slumber.
(Note: Pictured here with non-gluten free orzo)
"I want to eat this again and again" – My boyfriend
This one-pot soup/stew was hearty, savory, and warming. I was intrigued by the vegan recipe for Greek avgolemono soup by Vegan Cocotte but wanted to make it gluten free and use Slumbering Sesame sauce. Using Arborio rice adds about 20 minutes to the cooking time but infuses this delectable and filling dish with possibilities - risotto, arancini, crisped, and more!
Savory Lemon-Chickpea Soup
Total Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Optional Pre-Cooking Time: up to 1 hour^
Required Equipment: Soup pot
Optional Equipment: Instant Pot^
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, roughly sliced*
2 medium celery stalks, roughly sliced*
1 medium carrot, roughly chopped*
4 cups vegetable stock**
1/2 cup Arborio rice
14 oz chickpeas - canned or cooked in Instant Pot^
1 cup aquafaba (optional)
8 oz fresh spinach, washed well and dried
2 Tablespoons Slumbering Sesame sauce
1 large lemon, juiced with 2 slices cut set aside and cut in half
*I enjoyed the crunch of the vegetables in this hearty soup and its silky grains. If you'd prefer them to be soft, chop finely and cook the onion, carrot, and celery together for an additional 5 minutes.
**I used Better than Bouillon paste but have made many a fantastic dish with store-bought and/or homemade broth. The Better than Bouillon has a strong salty flavor so if you use other broth, you may need to add salt at the end.
^Optional Instant Pot Chickpeas:
In Instant Pot, add 1 cup dried chickpeas to 2 cups of water. You can also add 1 bay leaf if you like.
Set IP to "Bean" setting and cook for 45 minutes.
Let steam naturally release for 15 min.
Remove bay leaf and set aside.
Drain and quick rinse chickpeas saving the Instant Pot aquafaba / soaking liquid from canned chickpeas. (Aquafaba is the term for the water in which legumes - in this case chickpeas - have been cooked). Set both aside.
In a large soup pot, heat 2 Tablespoons of olive oil over medium-low heat. When oil starts to shimmer, add onions and sautee about 7 minutes.
When onions start to brown, add add celery and carrots and cook 2 minutes.
Turn heat down to low and add Arborio rice. Stir about 2 minutes until rice become almost translucent at the edges while still opaque in the center.
Set aside 1.5 - 2 cups of vegetable broth.
Add 1/2 cup vegetable broth and stir until pan is almost dry. Continue adding 1/2 cup broth and stirring rice is al dente - about 20-30 minutes and 2-2.5 cups of broth.
Raise heat to medium-high and add remainder of vegetable broth. Bring to simmer and add chickpeas and spinach. Stir, cover, and cook for 3 minutes.
Turn off heat and 2 Tablespoons Slumbering Sesame, leaving your pot on the stove. Stir well and taste. If your soup is thin, add up to 1 cup aquafaba or chickpea soaking liquid and simmer for another 2 minutes.
Add up to 1/4 cup)
Serve in large bowls topped with halved lemon slices. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.