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March 3, 2010

Creamy Garbanzo-ball and Wild Rice Soup

I recently picked up some black short grain rice without any big plans on what I would use it for. The first thing that came to mind was coming up with a vegan friendly creamy chicken and wild rice soup. This sounded tasty and I was up to the challenge. 

I worked out all of the vegetables and also what the creamy dairy-free broth would be composed of, so the only thing left to figure was the chicken substitute. Chicken flavored bean balls would be fun, yes? Ah, yes, and I knew that garbanzo beans would be up to the task. 

The end result was creamy, hearty, and exactly what I was going for. My only complaint is that when I stirred the rice into the pot of gorgeous creamy white soup it discolored the broth a little bit. Of course this did not make the soup less delicious, it just made it a teeny bit less pretty for its closeup.

Creamy Garbanzo-ball and Wild Rice Soup
Serves 4

2 cups cooked short grain black rice (or wild rice, or blend of choice)
3 carrots, chopped
3 ribs of celery, chopped
1 medium onion, diced
1 cup of frozen peas
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tbsp dried parsley
2 bay leaves
5 cups water
2-1/2 not chick'n bouillon cubes
1 cup rice milk
1 cup firm silken tofu (1/2 package)(or more for a thicker soup)
3 tbsp chickpea flour

1 15 oz. can chickpeas
1/2 not chick'n bouillon cube
1/2 tbsp tahini
1/2 tbsp cornstarch
1/2 tbsp dried parsley
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp dried thyme
3 tbsp water
1/2 cup chickpea flour

Spray soup pot with olive oil cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Add onions and saute for about 5 minutes, or until translucent. Add a couple of tablespoons of water if onions start to stick. Stir in garlic and saute for another minute before mixing in carrots, celery, thyme, parsley, and bay leaves. Continue to saute, stirring often for 5 minutes. Add water and bouillon cubes and stir until bouillon dissolves completely. Turn up heat to bring to boil and then reduce heat to simmer. Meanwhile start the garbanzo-balls.

Combine all ingredients except the chickpea flour in food processor and puree. Add in flour gradually and pulse until fully incorporated. The flour should dry out the mixture a little bit, but it should still be moist. The mixture should be easy to roll into balls, and shouldn't be overly sticky and moist. Spray a large non-stick skillet and heat over medium heat. Grab a heaping tablespoon of the bean mixture and roll into a ball and add into the skillet as you go. The mixture should make about 20 balls. Roll the garbanzo-balls around in the pan every 2 minutes or so, to brown all sides. You just want these to lightly brown and crisp up on the outside, but watch carefully to not darken them too much as this will dry them out. 

The garbanzo-balls should be done in 10-15 minutes, and by this time the veggies in the soup pot should be tender and ready to go. Remove the bay leaves and mix in the frozen peas. Puree rice milk, tofu, and chickpea flour in your blender and then stir into the soup pot. Lastly stir in your garbanzo-balls and rice and bring to temperature. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

I am submitting this soup to the March No Croutons Required blogging event, in which the theme is soups and salads featuring chickpeas. Vote for your favorite soup or salad starting March 20.

Don't forget to enter my Primal Strips giveaway, open until the end of the day this Friday, March 5!


  1. Oooohhh, this sounds awesome. YUM. I love chickpeas! As always, thanks for sharing!

  2. Oh that looks good, Sarah! Everybody seems to be posting about soup lately! I think I will too! That will have to come later today. But I've got something I can put up... But wait... This comment isn't supposed to be about me! Back to you-- :) Chickpeas are great, aren't they! You always seem to have great ideas in the kitchen department. You inspire me! I hope to try your recipe!

    Oh and thanks again for visiting my blog and leaving me kind comments, Sarah! Talk to you soon!

  3. I am making this this weekend, it sounds fantastic!

  4. That sounds like such a great soup! I love that you made chickpea balls to replace the chicken. That sounds so much better than just dumping in a can of chickpeas (which I would have done).

  5. You had me at "bean ball"! This soup sounds delicious. I love the idea of chickpea balls floating in a rice-filled soup. And I think the color is lovely.

  6. I'm so excited to have discovered your beautiful blog! I adore chickpeas, and I am sooo psyched about this recipe... :-)

  7. This is such a pretty soup, a real feast for the eyes and the belly! Thanks for submitting it :)

  8. This is gorgeous & sounds so delicious! Anything with wild rice & garbanzo beans is a winner in my eyes!

  9. That looks awesome!

  10. That sounds fabulous... I love black rice in soups :)

  11. This looks very, very good! I'm sure no one misses the bird.

  12. That is a lovely broth!!!! Garbanzos are so incredible in soups, and I love that you took it to the next level and made garbanzo bean balls. Your blog has inspired many a meal in this house, and it looks like it shall inspire another!

  13. This thing just _screams_ comfort food. It also reminds me of a Finnish dish called "summer soup" - which doesn't have any kind of balls (heh), but it's a milk-based soup which features peas, carrots and other veggies. And of course kids hate it, because it's usually way too bland. I'm sure this one isn't!

  14. Such a great idea Sarah! I love that it is healthy, but still a hearty meal. Perfect for my chickpea addiction!

  15. Looks great to me! I like the color that the rice adds. This is so healthy with the tofu blended in.

  16. Wow, looks delicious and complicated in a fun way. Did the balls hold up during the whole eating and cooking process? What an innovative cook you've become!

  17. blessedmama - thanks for your comment :) I had actually wondered if they would hold up after soaking in the broth, and it turned out to not be a problem at all. The beanballs are dense since they consist almost entirely of beans, they didn't crumble at all (not even in the leftovers I had the next day). It is a fun complicated soup, but if you have some rice at the ready it actually comes together quickly.

  18. This looks and sounds delicious!!!! I was just thinking earlier that I wanted to try and make Italian Wedding Soup for my blog, I like the idea of garbanzo bean balls!!! I think they would be timid enough for a light broth!!!
    Thanks for the idea!!!!! Love your btw, I looked through it and it is wonderful!!!!
    I can't wait to try the bean balls!!!!!

  19. Just perfect. Thanks so much for your entry. I just love the garbanzo balls and will be trying these for sure.

  20. This soup looks absolutely delicious! Always catches my eye when I visit your site, so I feel compelled to comment... ONE OF THESE DAYS I have to get around to making it : )

  21. This looks sooo good! I love garbanzo beans, what a great new way to use them, thanks!


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