I’ve been going through the cupboard to find fun and new things for dinner…

I’m not grocery shopping as often as I used to and crazy times call for creative thinking. One thing we have in abundance, right now, are garbanzo beans. I bought a big bag of them from Palouse Brands in Washington a while back – and we still have plenty.

Last night I set a few cups out to soak, and this morning decided top figure out what to do with them. It’s always fun to decide after the fact…

I had seen a recipe on La Cucina Italiana for a pasta sauce with orecchiette and a fava bean sauce – the wheels started turning… Oddly – or not – I actually have dried fava beans, as well. I didn’t think of the recipe, though, until after I had soaked the garbanzos…

I made the sauce more-or-less like the recipe stated, but thought it too sweet – almost dessert-like. Almonds, and ricotta can do that – so I added speck and green onions to the finished dish.


I also used dried beans, but I did the recipe using canned – I figured most of y’all will have better access to them… Also… use whatever pasta you have. A sturdy pasta like rigatoni or orecchiette would probably work best, but if you only have spaghetti – use it! And no speck? Use ham, or prosciutto, or pancetta, or bacon… sausage… Or none at all. Use what you have. Make do.

Rigatoni with Chickpea, Almonds, Ricotta, and Speck

  • 1 can garbanzo beans, drained
  • 1 cup ricotta
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 4 oz diced speck
  • 2 green onions
  • olive oil
  • S&P to taste
  • 4 oz pasta of choice

Place beans, ricotta, and almonds in blender and mix to a creamy consistency – adding about 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Mixture will be thick.

Cook pasta, reserving some of the cooking water.

In a large skillet, cook speck. Add the bean mixture and heat through.

Stir in cooked pasta and add cooking water to thin to desired consistency.

Stir in chopped green onions.


It was really simple and had a ton of flavor.