I am the person who orders Caesar salad just for the croutons. Spaghetti just for the meatballs. Sundaes just for the hot fudge.
I have seen lots and lots of fried parsley out there - so I wondered . . . can you fry cilantro? I couldn't WAIT to try.
Turns out, you can! You cook it just the same way that you cook parsley - it takes just a minute to get crisp, but just like parsley, it holds its own with the hot oil and makes a pretty garnish for the top of a bowl of soup.
I put a blended chick pea soup underneath the garnish and it is YUM. Yes, both the soup and the garnish!
-- posted by Donna
CREAMY CHICK PEA SOUP WITH CRISPY CILANTRO GARNISH
2 shallots, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
6 cups vegetable broth
2 cans (15 ounces each) chick peas, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup cilantro
Peanut or canola oil for frying
Pepitas or nuts for garnish as desired.
Heat a large stock pot to medium heat. Add vegetable oil. Add shallots and saute for 2 to 3 minutes until softened, stirring constantly. Add garlic and cook another minute or so, until fragrant.
Add stock and chick peas and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, until chick peas are very soft. Taste and add cayenne pepper sauce and s & p as desired.
Remove from heat and let cool to warm. Blend in a blender until very smooth. OPtional step: Strain through a fine mesh strainer.
Meanwhile, heat oil in a small skillet to medium high heat (about 350 degrees). Add cilantro and cook for 30 to 60 seconds, until very crisp. Use as a garnish. Also garnish with pepitas or other nuts as desired.
My inspiration from other bloggers' soups:
Kalyn's Kitchen made a yummy blended chick pea soup with sumac and garlic flavors.
Pinch My Salt went Asian with their chick pea soup.
This American Bite has a lovely soup they call Hummus Soup.