Secret Recipe: Nopalito's Fried Garbanzo Beans


7x7 asks the city's chefs for the recipes to their most loved cocktails, bar snacks, starters, mains, and desserts. If there's a dish you can't stop thinking about and want to make at home, email Your wish may end up on the blog, along with the actual recipe from the chef.

Inspired by "botanas” or bar snacks, these fried little wonders have been on the menu since Nopalito’s opening in 2009. At the restaurant, they toast the chiles before grinding them into powder to give them a smokey flavor, then braise the garbanzos in the oven, but they’ve simplified the technique so you can just as easily make these at home. Go garbanzo.

Fried Garbanzo Beans

Yields 1 quart

2 cups dried garbanzo beans

6 cups water

2 tablespoons salt

1 quart rice bran oil

1 tablespoon ground chile de arbol

1 tablespoon ground guajillo chile

1.    In a six-quart pot, combine the water, salt, and garbanzo beans, and bring to a boil.
2.    As soon as it boils, cover the pot, lower heat down to a low simmer, and cook the beans for approximately two hours. The beans should be soft when they are fully cooked.
3.    Strain the beans. Let dry completely and refrigerate for 24 hours.
4.    In a 2-quart pot, bring the oil to 325 degrees.
5.    Slowly add the garbanzo beans and fry for 10 minutes or until there are very few bubbles on the surface of the oil. They should be crispy all the way through.
6.    Remove the beans from the oil and, while still hot, toss them with both ground chiles mixed together. Add salt to taste.

Thanks to Judy H. for the request!

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