Spanish Vegetable Soup With Chickpeas and Chard

(from kylerhea’s recipe box)

This thick meal brims with vegetables. The tang comes from a spoonful of vinegar that is tossed with toasted bread and added to the soup at the end of cooking."
Advance preparation: You can make this through step 4 up to a day ahead of serving. You might want to hold off adding the chard until you reheat if you want it to have a nice color. Bring the soup to a simmer, add the chard and simmer 10 minutes, then proceed with step 5.

Source: NYTimes (Martha Rose Shulman)

Serves 8 people

Categories: beans, cabbage, soups, swiss chard, tomatoes, turnips


  • 1 1/2 cups chickpeas, washed, picked over, and soaked for six hours or overnight in 1 quart water
  • Salt, preferably kosher salt, to taste
  • 4 1/2-inch thick slices baguette
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves, 1 cut in half, the rest minced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 pound carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 1 (28-ounce) can chopped tomatoes, with liquid
  • 1/2 pound turnips, peeled and diced
  • 2 cups shredded cabbage
  • 3/4 pound Swiss chard, stemmed, washed and chopped
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley leaves
  • Pinch of saffron threads


  1. Drain the chickpeas and combine with 1 1/2 quarts fresh water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, add salt to taste, cover and simmer 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until tender.

  2. Toast the bread until golden. Remove from the heat and rub with the cut clove of garlic, then tear the bread into smaller pieces. Place in a small bowl, and douse with the vinegar. Toss in the bowl, and set aside.

  3. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a heavy soup, and add the onion and carrots. Cook, stirring, until the onion is tender, about five minutes. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt, half the garlic and all the paprika, and stir together for a minute. Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring often until the tomatoes cook down and thicken, 10 to 15 minutes.

  4. Add the chickpeas with their liquid, the turnips, cabbage and 2 1/2 cups water. Bring to a boil, add salt to taste, reduce the heat to low, and cook until the turnips are tender, about 20 minutes. Stir in the chard and the remaining garlic, and simmer another 10 minutes. Add lots of pepper, taste and adjust salt.

  5. Add the parsley, bread and saffron. Stir, turn off the heat, and let the soup rest for 10 minutes. Serve hot.

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