Ceci (Chickpea) Sauce with Penne
Rach’s delicious chickpea sauce with penne is inexpensive and highly nutritious. Chickpeas are low in saturated fat and very low in cholesterol and sodium. They are also a good source of dietary fiber, protein and copper and an excellent source of folate.
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus more for drizzling
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 Fresno or Holland red chili pepper, finely chopped
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped
- 1 fresh bay leaf
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 can chickpeas (28 ounces), rinsed and drained, divided
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 can whole or crushed San Marzano tomatoes (28 ounces)
- 1 pound whole wheat or whole grain penne pasta
- Freshly grated Pecorino cheese, for serving
- Flat leaf parsley, finely chopped, for serving
Heat 3 tablespoons EVOO in a large skillet or medium size Dutch oven. Add the onion, garlic, Fresno chili, rosemary, bay leaf, salt and pepper and cook to soften, 7-8 minutes.
Meanwhile, add about 2/3 of the chickpeas to a food processor, then quick-pulse into fine bits. Add the finely chopped chickpeas and remaining whole chickpeas to the pan and heat through. Stir in the stock and tomatoes. Break up the whole tomatoes and simmer the sauce to thicken a little. Cool and store for a make-ahead meal.
Reheat over moderate heat and stir occasionally.
Bring the water to a boil for the pasta; salt the water and cook to al dente. Reserve a cup of starchy pasta water just before draining. Drain the pasta and place back in the hot pot and toss with the sauce and as much starchy water as you need to combine.
Serve the pasta in shallow bowls topped with a drizzle of EVOO and sprinkle of Pecorino cheese and parsley.