The chickpea (Cicer arietinum) (also garbanzo bean, Indian pea, ceci bean, Bengal gram) is an edible legume of the family Fabaceae, subfamily Faboideae. Chickpeas are high in protein and one of the earliest cultivated vegetables. 7,500-year-old remains have been found in the Middle East. Chickpeas are considered a superfood. [1]

Types of ChickpeaEdit

There are two main kinds of chickpea.


The Desi (meaning country or local in Hindi) is also known as Bengal gram or kala chana. Desi, which has small, darker seeds and a rough coat, cultivated mostly in the Indian subcontinent, Ethiopia, Mexico, and Iran. Desi is likely the earliest form since it closely resembles seeds found both on archaeological sites and the wild plant ancestor of domesticated chickpeas (Cicer reticulatum) which only grows in southeast Turkey, where it is believed to have originated. Desi chickpeas have a markedly higher fiber content than Kabulis and hence a very low glycemic index which may make them suitable for people with blood sugar problems. The desi type is used to make Chana Dal, which is a split chickpea with the skin removed.


Kabulih has lighter coloured, larger seeds and a smoother coat, mainly grown in Southern Europe, Northern Africa, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Chile, also introduced during the 18th century to the Indian subcontinent. Kabuli (meaning from Kabul in Hindi, since they were thought to have come from Afghanistan when first seen in India) is the kind widely grown throughout the Mediterranean.

Gram flourEdit

Chickpea flour or gram flour is used in many Indian recipes, [2] some with meat others vegetarian. Meat eaters who want to limit the meat they eat for ethical or health reasons can use gram flour as a protein suplement and use less meat. Gram flour can replace wheat flour, Soya flour or Cornstarch in some western type recipes, experimenting is worthwhile. I recently tried it in Celery soup and it worked. Putting enough sugar to counteract the savoury taste of gram flour is not healthy so soya flour is preferable for sweet dishes.

Gram flour can also work in pancakes that are a bit western, Fusion cuisine. [3]


  1. Chickpeas, lentils and beans
  2. Gram flour
  3. Gramcake Gluten-Free Vegan

External linksEdit

External linksEdit

  • Chickpeas This is from a vegetarian websites and includes some suggestions that aren't here.
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.