Fresh Garbanzo Beans
USA or Mexico, depending on availability
Many people are familiar with garbanzo beans (aka chickpeas) that are sold canned or dried, but young fresh garbanzos are an entirely different experience. Fresh chickpeas have a beautiful light green color and a fresh flavor evoking both canned garbanzos and fresh green peas.
Fresh chickpeas can be shelled & prepared similarly to green peas, pureed into hummus, bean purees and dips, or cooked in the shell & eaten similarly to soybeans.
Dried black garbanzo beans are also available.
Store fresh garbanzo beans in a plastic bag in your refrigerator.
Outer pods will keep their fresh appearance for 3-5 days. The beans should stay fresh for 5-7 days total.
RECIPES & TIPS
Fresh chickpeas can either be cooked in-shell and then popped from their pods at the table (as you would soybeans) or shelled before use.
In their shells, chickpeas can be steamed, roasted, broiled or sautéed.
To remove fresh chickpeas from their pods, simply shell as you would conventional sweet peas, cracking open the pods and scraping out the beans with your fingers.
Once peeled, fresh garbanzo beans can be eaten raw, lightly blanched, sautéed, etc. Some chefs briefly blanch them in boiling salted water, then shock them in an ice water bath to “set the color” before serving or continuing to cook them using other methods.
Besides being served as a vegetable or addition to salads, fresh chickpeas can also be pureed into hummus and other purees or dips. Hummus is traditionally made by pureeing chickpeas with garlic, tahini, lemon, salt and olive oil.