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Chickpea Escarole Stew


Chickpea Escarole Stew

Chickpea and Escarole Stew

Photo © Molly Watson

Loosely based on leblebi, a Tunisian breakfast soup, this chickpea and escarole stew is a quick and easy one-dish dinner. Chickpeas and escarole are quickly heated in broth, poured over pieces of bread and topped with a variety of garnishes and a sunny poached egg.

Like all dishes that call for broth, this dish is at its best when made with high-quality or homemade stock. Want to keep things as homemade as possible? Try this harissa recipe as well.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes


  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 can (15 oz.) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 head escarole, cleaned and chopped or torn into bite-size pieces
  • 3 tbsp. distilled white or white wine vinegar
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 slices (about 1/2-in. thick) country bread, torn into bite-size pieces
  • 1/4 cup chopped capers (optional)
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground cumin (optional)
  • 1 to 4 tsp. harissa or other hot chile sauce (optional)


  1. Bring the broth to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the chickpeas and escarole and reduce heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the escarole wilts and is tender. Keep the stew warm over low heat.
  2. Meanwhile, bring 1 to 2 inches of water to a simmer in a large frying pan. Add the vinegar and crack the eggs into water. Cook, undisturbed, for 3 minutes for a runny yolk and 5 minutes for a set yolk. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the eggs to a plate lined with a clean kitchen towel or layers of paper towels. (See this Step-By-Step Guide to Poaching Eggs for more details.)
  3. Divide the bread evenly among 4 soup or pasta plates. Top the bread with the chickpea and escarole. Garnish with the capers, cumin, and harissa as you like. Top each portion with a poached egg. Serve hot.

Serves 4.

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