Chickpeas, or garbanzo beans, are one of the earliest cultivated vegetables and are very popular in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine. They are high in protein and fiber and are a good source of carbohydrates. These can be cooked in just a few minutes if they are canned, but the raw or dried varieties require more preparation before cooking.
Wash the raw chickpeas to remove any stones or grit that may have stayed with them.
Place the chickpeas in a pan of salted water and leave to soak overnight. It is not always necessary to soak overnight, but it should be for at least 4 hours.
Strain the chickpeas and wash with clean water.
Place the chickpeas in a saucepan, cover with water and place over high heat.
Bring the water to the boil, reduce the temperature and simmer for 1 hour or until tender. Remove any foam that develops on the surface of the water.
Strain the chickpeas and serve as desired.
This method can be replicated by soaking the chickpeas and then cooking for a similar amount of time as part of a casserole or curry.