One of the best parts about spring is how the light changes. Even if it's still too cool to bare your ankles, the light is buttery and soft and long-shadowed.
This Genius soup—Heidi Swanson's Chickpea Stew with Saffron, Yogurt, and Garlic—is a bit like that. It's the warmest, gentlest yellow (thanks to saffron), creamier than you'd think (thanks to yogurt), and heftier than you'd expect a spring soup to be (thanks to chickpeas). It's "lush in all the right places," as Kristen wrote in the recipe's headnote, which makes it a go-to for these still-chilly days—especially since all the ingredients are staples, and they marry in just about 20 minutes.
3 cups cooked chickpeas (One and a half 15-ounce cans, rinsed and drained)
4 cups vegetable broth
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
We're assuming you already have olive oil, a large yellow onion, salt, 2 cloves garlic, saffron threads, 3 egg yolks, 1 cup of plain yogurt, and sweet paprika. If not, add those to the list!
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The Game Plan:
About 20 minutes before dinner, finely chop the onion and sauté it in a medium-large pot over medium-high heat with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a few pinches of salt, stirring until softened. Stir in the chickpeas, broth, and garlic, bring the liquid to a simmer, and then remove from the heat.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, saffron, and yogurt. Add a cup of the hot broth to the yogurt mixture, stirring constantly as you do. (This prevents curdling—very important.) Slooooowly whisk the yogurt-broth mixture into the soup pot. Without letting it come to a simmer, cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly, until the soup has thickened considerably.
Serve in bowls sprinkled with paprika and lots of chopped cilantro.