Orzo and Chickpeas in the Oven


Orzo and Chickpeas in the Oven with cretan ‘’syglino’’-cured pork-

by chef Nikolaou Dina


For the chickpeas: 

  • Soak chickpeas in plenty of cold water with coarse salt from the previous night. 
  • The next day, add water and baking powder and leave them for 10΄. 
  • Place chickpeas in a strainer and rinse thoroughly with running water. 
  • Put clean chickpeas in a pot with water, add onions, the bay leaf, carnation and boil for 40΄. 
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (select upper and lower heat). 
  • Place chickpeas in a baking pan, add the rest of the ingredients, cover it with aluminium foil and bake for 40΄.

For the orzo

  • Pour olive oil in a big frying pan and wait until the oil is hot. 
  • Add the onions, syglino and fennel, season with salt and sauté for 2΄ while stirring. 
  • Add grated tomatoes, tomato paste, fennel seeds, garlic, salt, pepper and then stir. 
  • Start pouring vegetable stock the way you would do if preparing a risotto until the orzo swells up and softens.
  • Remove from fire, add the cooked chickpeas, the fresh fennel, and stir lightly.  
  • Serve immediately. 



για τη συνταγή

For the chickpeas:
500 g peeled chickpeas
1 tsp baking powder
2 whole peeled red onions
1 bay leaf
3-4 carnation cloves
250 g sun-dried tomatoes in oil (do not drain their oil) cut into strips
Orange (preferably organic) peel and juice
½ tbsp cumin powder
1 tbsp aniseed powder
Freshly ground pepper
2 tbsp sweet red pepper flakes (or 1 tsp sweet paprika powder)

For the orzo:
300 g orzo
200 g Cretan syglino diced
500 g tomatoes grated
1 tbsp tomato paste
850 ml vegetable stock or water
1 tbsp fennel seeds
80 ml olive oil
1 red onion cut into thick squares
1 finocchio peeled (remove thick stalks) cut into thin slices
3 garlic cloves crushed
1 bunch fresh fennel thinly cut
Freshly ground pepper




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