Creamy chickpea, sea vegetable soup with arugula and teff fries

This is a simple, creamy soup with a lot of rich flavors. Whole grain teff has a similar texture to polenta, and served here as fries, it add a fun crispy texture, nutrition and taste. This makes a light starter for 4 or a light but filling lunch for two.


For the soup
2T water
2T scallion, minced
1T fresh garlic, minced
1/4t dried red chilis (or to taste)
1/2T lemon juice
1 cup cooked chickpeas
3 cups vegetable stock
1 ‘sprig’ dried kombu (about 1″)
1/2 cup unsweetened plant milk (I use soy)
1T sesame seed butter
1T dried wakame, crumbled
1 1/2T tapioca flour dissolved in 2T water
Coarse sea salt and black pepper to taste
1t purple dulse flakes
1t nori flakes
2 cups loose baby arugula

For the fries
1/2 cup whole grain teff
2 cups water
1/4t coarse sea salt
2T unsweetened plant milk (I use soy)
2T nutritional yeast
1T fresh garlic, minced
1T tamari
Coarse sea salt and black pepper to taste

Optional: The soup doesn’t have to be spicy, but the chilis add flavor and to the mouth feel. Cornstarch and arrowroot powder will both work in place of the tapioca here. The fries are made without oil here assume the soup — brush the cut teff with a little oil and bake on a lightly oiled baking sheet for something more like a traditional fry.


Start the fries first, and then make the soup.

In a medium pan with a lid, toast the teff for 2 – 3
minutes. Add the water and sea salt. Bring the pan to a light boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for about 20 minutes until the water has been absorbed and the teff is thick (it should be pulling away from the sides).

When the teff is ready, add the remaining ingredients, stir to combine, and season to taste. Pour/spoon the mixture into a 3″x9″ baking dish and refrigerate for 30 minutes or so to setup (it should be firm).

Preheat the oven to 450F (or the highest temperature for which your baking paper is rated). Slice the cooled teff into 12 – 16 pieces width-wise. On a baking sheet or roasting pan lined with baking paper, bake for 20-30 minutes on the middle rack until the fries are lightly crisp,
turning every several minutes. Remove from oven, plate with the soup when ready.

With the teff in the oven, start the soup. Warm a medium sized pan with a lid to heat on medium heat. Add the scallions and 2T water to the pan and water saute for 2 minutes. Add the chilis and garlic. Saute for 1 minute. Add the lemon juice and deglaze the pan if necessary. Add the chickpeas, stock, and kombu.

Bring the pan to a light simmer and simmer on medium low for about 10 minutes. Remove the kombu. Add plant milk and sesame seed butter and stir to dissolve. Simmer 5 minutes. Puree smooth. Add the wakame and simmer another 10 minutes.

Stirring continuously, slowly add the tapioca mixture until the soup thickens (should be immediate). Let cool for a minute. Ladle out, sprinkle with the dulse and nori, add the arugula and serve with the fries on the side.

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