There's a Roman version I've done that has anchovies and chilies in the aromatic base and doesn't have the lemon at the end. It's like pasta e fagioli, only with chickpeas.
Here's Pasta e Ceci from the Williams-Sonoma Rome book, based on the ristorante Paris recipe.
Pasta e ceci
- 1 lb dried chickpeas
- 1 tablespoon baking soda
- salt and freshly ground pepper
- 6 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
- 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
- 1 14 oz can plum tomatoes
- 2 boiling potatoes, peeled and cut lengthwise into narrow wedges
- 1 small dried red chile
- 1/2 lb tagliolini, broken into 2-inch pieces
- 1 tablespoon flat-leaf parsely, minced
1. Pick over the chickpeas, discarding any grit or misshapen beans. Rinse well, place in a large bowl or pot, and add the baking soda, 1 tablespoon salt, and warm water to cover generously. Cover and place in the refrigerator overnight.
2. Drain the chickpeas and return them to the pot. Add cold water to cover generously, 2 teaspoons salt, and 2 of the garlic cloves and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low (making sure to maintain a gentle simmer) and cook, uncovered, until tender, at least 1–2 hours; the timing will depend on the age of the chickpeas. Remove from the heat and drain, reserving the cooking water; you should have at least 2 cups water.
3. While the chickpeas are cooking, in a small frying pan over medium heat, warm the ½ cup olive oil. Add the remaining 4 garlic cloves and the rosemary and fry until the garlic is golden brown, about 2 minutes. Pour the oil through a fine-mesh sieve held over a soup pot, and discard the garlic and rosemary. Add the tomatoes and their juice, the potatoes, 2 teaspoons salt, a few grinds of pepper, and the chile, and place over low heat. Cook slowly until the potatoes are soft, about 15 minutes.
4. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the potatoes to a bowl and mash with a fork. Return the potatoes to the pot over low heat, add the drained chickpeas and about 1 cup of the cooking water (or lightly salted tap water), and cook for about 30 minutes to blend the flavors. (the soup can be made up to this point, covered, and refrigerated for up to 2 days.)
5. If the soup is very dense, add more of the chickpea cooking water or some lightly salted water to thin it to a good consistency. Then taste and adjust the seasoning with salt.
6. Meanwhile, in a separate pot, cook the pasta in boiling salted water until very al dente. Drain the pasta and add it to the soup. Cook, stirring to mix all the ingredients together, for 1–2 minutes longer.
7. Ladle the soup into a warmed tureen or shallow rimmed bowls, sprinkle with the parsley, and serve at once. Pass the pepper mill and olive oil at the table.
SOURCE: Williams-Sonoma, Rome
Maureen B. Fant