Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Rice with chickpeas and crispy potatoes

When it comes out perfectly, this recipe yields a layer of thin, crispy potatoes, topped by a delicious mixture of rice, chickpeas and onions. But even if the potatoes don't come out perfectly crispy, this recipe is still great. Serve it with some salad on the side and you have a complete meal.

It's really best to make this recipe with dried chickpeas that you cook at home, but canned will also do in a pinch. 

Rice with Chickpeas and Crispy Potatoes

Ingredients (for 4-6 portions): 

- 1 large potato, sliced into thin slices
- 1-2 tbsp of canola oil 
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped or minced 
- 1-2 tsp olive oil 
- 1-2 cups of cooked chickpeas (or canned) 
- 2 cups of rice 
- 4 cups of water 
- salt and pepper


1) Heat the olive oil in a frying pan, and fry the onion and garlic until they are lightly golden.  Set aside.
2) Put the canola oil in a medium pot (one that has a lid) and layer the bottom of the pot with the potato slices. Don't worry if the potatoes overlap. Place the pot on a medium-high heat and cook until the potatoes begin to crisp up around the edges. 

3) Add the rice, fried onions and garlic and the chickpeas to the pot and very gently stir them (you want the chickpeas to be interspersed within the rice, but not to move the potatoes at the bottom of the pan). Add the water, season with salt and pepper, and cover. 

4) Lower the heat to medium low, and cook until the rice is completely cooked and all the water has been absorbed, about 20-30 minutes. Then continue cooking a while longer, until the rice that is touching the side of the pan begins to be golden and a bit crispy. Be careful not to burn the dish! 

5) Remove from heat.  Check seasoning and add more salt or pepper if necessary. When serving, make sure that each diner gets some of the potatoes from the bottom of the pan as well as a mixture of rice, onions and chickpeas.

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