Pasta e Ceci

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again:  I don’t do meal planning.  I am in AWE of the people who can plan their meals a week or a month at a time and stick to it.  I never know what I’m going to feel like from one day to another, so I just keep my arsenal of basics stocked up and I go from there.  This morning while catching up on Facebook, I was reminded exactly why meal planning isn’t an attractive notion in this household.  My friend Chiara, who happens to live in Rome, posted something about the weather getting cooler, and that this would be a good time to snuggle up and eat some Pasta e Ceci. I actually have eaten Pasta e Ceci in Rome & had totally forgotten about it until Chiara mentioned it!  It was at the Antica Birreria Peroni one afternoon when we popped in for lunch on our trip this summer.  Super simple and delicious, but I had never made it.  That has all changed now, and I give you…

Pasta e Ceci

adapted from


*1 can chickpeas, drained with some liquid reserved

*14 oz crushed tomatoes

*8 oz ditalini pasta (I suppose another smallish pasta would suffice, but ditalini seems pretty traditional)

*2 tbsp olive oil

*6 cloves of garlic, grated or minced

*salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste

To Make:

*Saute garlic in olive oil until it begins to become fragrant.

*Add the tomatoes to the garlic.

*Season mixture to your taste (salt, pepper, red pepper flakes) and let simmer for about 10 minutes.

*Add chickpeas to the sauce with reserved liquid and continue to let simmer.

*Boil pasta until it is about halfway cooked, then add it to the sauce to finish cooking completely.

*Pour yourself a glass of Italian red wine (Chianti, Montepulciano, Nero d’Avola) to congratulate yourself on what promises to be a fantastic dinner.

*Sip on your glass of wine.

*This is ready to serve when the pasta has reached al dente doneness and when you’ve refilled your wine glass.

Please excuse the terrible phone photograph, but the battery for the real camera was dead!!

Survey Says:

Perfection in a bowl!  I think that Jake was a little wary of it to begin with, and seriously, who could blame him?  We eat a lot of pasta/legumes/tomatoes/garlic in this house!  He did, however, love it and tell me that it was definitely something that needed to be made on a regular basis.  Awesome, because although it’s not necessarily quick, it’s an easy and filling  meal!


6 responses to this post.

  1. Here’s another confession from me…chickpeas freak me out a lot. Especially whole. I like my chickpeas ground up and in hummus form. They’re so good for you…but the texture whole or uncooked always freaks me out and if a recipe calls for them..I usually just pretend I don’t have some sitting in the pantry because i’m a wimp like that.

    Alas, I may have to try this out..because you’ve never steered me wrong yet with your delish recipes..and this is making my tummy growl just reading about it! Nom nom nom!


    • 🙂 I get it! They work really well here because they’re so close in size to the ditalini, but you could totally substitute white beans and get the same effect! You know that I would never steer you wrong, and if you stock up on enough of the aforementioned Italian wines, you just may forget that there are chickpeas in there!! 😉


  2. Looks delicious! I love chickpeas and anything with chickpeas in it. My husband and I even nicknamed our son Ceci Bean 😉

    I was also stopping by to let you know, I’ve given you The Sunshine Award. Stop by and check out my post for the details. Congrats!



  3. So, I’m a terrible meat eater, but I have the ingredients here to make this dish, including the ditalini, which I bought for Minestroni last week. Will you hate me if I sub in ground beef for the chickpeas? 🙂


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