3 cups dried chickpeas, or 4 cups drained canned chickpeas
2 tablespoons plus 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 yellow onion, quartered
1 celery stalk, cut in half, plus 1 cup finely diced celery
2 medium carrots, peeled and halved
4 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 sprigs fresh thyme
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup finely diced red onion
1 cup red wine vinegar
2 garlic gloves, crushed and peeled
1/2 teaspoon chopped peperoncini, or 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano, or 1 tablespoon dried Sicilian oregano
1 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
Zest and lemon juice from 1 lemon
- If using dried chickpeas, soak the chickpeas in water overnight and drain.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the yellow onion, celery stalk, and carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes, until the vegetables begin to color.
- Tie 2 sprigs of rosemary and the thyme sprigs in cheesecloth and add to the vegetables. Add the chickpeas (soaked dried or canned) and enough water to cover by 2 inches.
- Bring to a gentle simmer and reduce the heat to medium-low. Season with salt and pepper, and cook for about 1 1/2 hours, until the chickpeas are soft.
- Remove the skillet from the heat and set aside to cool completely. Drain, discarding the vegetables and herbs.
- In a bowl, combine the red onion and vinegar, and set aside for 15 minutes.
- Drain the onion and transfer to a large bowl. Add the diced celery, garlic, peperoncini, chickpeas, remaining 2 sprigs of rosemary, oregano, parsley, remaining 1 cup oil, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper and mix well. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, making sure to turn the mixture a couple of times while marinating.
- Allow the salad to come to room temperature before serving. Keeps well if refrigerated up to 3 to 4 days.
Makes 3 to 4 cups.