|White and green chickpeas|
The chickpea or chick pea (Cicer arietinum) is a legume of the family Fabaceae, subfamily Faboideae. It is also known as gram, or Bengal gram, garbanzo or garbanzo bean and sometimes known as Egyptian pea, ceci, cece or chana. Its seeds are high in protein. It is one of the earliest cultivated legumes: 7,500-year-old remains have been found in the Middle East.
- 1 Etymology
- 2 History
- 3 Description
- 4 Uses
- 5 Production
- 6 Pathogens
- 7 Nutrition
- 8 See also
- 9 References and notes
- 10 External links
The name "chickpea" traces back through the French chiche to cicer, Latin for ‘chickpea’ (from which the Roman cognomen Cicero was taken). The Oxford English Dictionary lists a 1548 citation that reads, "Cicer may be named in English Cich, or ciche pease, after the Frenche tongue." The dictionary cites "Chick-pea" in the mid-18th century; the original word in English taken directly from French was chich, found in print in English in 1388.
The word garbanzo came first to American English as garvance in the 17th century, from an alteration of the Old Spanish word arvanço (presumably influenced by garroba), being gradually anglicized to calavance, though it came to refer to a variety of other beans (cf. Calavance). The current form garbanzo comes directly from modern Spanish. This word is still used in Latin America and Spain to designate chickpeas. Some have suggested that the origin of the word arvanço is in the Greek erebinthos. Another possible origin is the word garbantzu, from Basque — a non-Indo-European tongue — in which it is a compound of garau, seed + antzu, dry.
Domesticated chickpeas have been found in the aceramic levels of Jericho (PPNB) along with Cayönü in Turkey and in Neolithic pottery at Hacilar, Turkey. They were found in the late Neolithic (about 3500 BCE) at Thessaly, Kastanas, Lerna and Dimini, Greece. In southern France Mesolithic layers in a cave at L'Abeurador, Aude have yielded wild chickpeas carbon dated to 6790±90 BCE.
By the Bronze Age, chickpeas were known in Italy and Greece. In classical Greece, they were called erébinthos and eaten as a staple, a dessert, or consumed raw when young. The Romans knew several varieties such as venus, ram, and punic chickpeas. They were cooked down into a broth or roasted as a snack. The Roman gourmet Apicius gives several recipes for chickpeas. Carbonized chickpeas have been found at the Roman legion fort at Neuss (Novaesium), Germany in layers from the first century CE, along with rice.
Chickpeas are mentioned in Charlemagne's Capitulare de villis (about 800 CE) as cicer italicum, as grown in each imperial demesne. Albertus Magnus mentions red, white and black varieties. Nicholas Culpeper noted "chick-pease or cicers" are less "windy" than peas and more nourishing. Ancient people also associated chickpeas with Venus because they were said to offer medical uses such as increasing sperm and milk, provoking menstruation and urine and helping to treat kidney stones. "White cicers" were thought to be especially strong and helpful.
In 1793, ground-roast chickpeas were noted by a German writer as a substitute for coffee in Europe. In the First World War, they were grown for this use in some areas of Germany. They are still sometimes brewed instead of coffee.
Sequencing the chickpea genome
Sequencing of the chickpea genome has been completed for 90 chickpea genotypes, including several wild species. A collaboration of 20 research organizations, led by the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) identified more than 28,000 genes and several million genetic markers. Scientists expect this work will lead to the development of superior varieties. The new research will benefit the millions of developing country farmers who grow chickpea as a source of much needed income, as well as for its ability to add nitrogen to the soil in which it grows. Production is growing rapidly across the developing world, especially in West Asia where production has grown four-fold over the past 30 years. India is by far the world largest producer but is also the largest importer.
The plant grows to between 20–50 cm (8–20 inches) high and has small feathery leaves on either side of the stem. Chickpeas are a type of pulse, with one seedpod containing two or three peas. It has white flowers with blue, violet or pink veins.
There are three main kinds of chickpea:
- Desi, which has small, darker seeds and a rough coat, cultivated mostly in India and much of the Indian Subcontinent, as well as Ethiopia, Mexico, and Iran.
- Bombay (Bambai), which is also dark in colour but slightly larger in size than the Desi variety. They too are popular in the Indian Subcontinent.
- Kabuli, associated with Kabul in Afghanistan. These are lighter coloured, with larger seeds and a smoother coat, mainly grown in Southern Europe, Northern Africa, South America and Indian Subcontinent, having been introduced during the 18th century to India.
The Desi (meaning 'country' or 'local' in Hindi/Urdu) is also known as Bengal gram or kala chana (black chickpea in both Hindi and Urdu) or chhola boot. Kabuli (meaning 'from Kabul' in Hindi/Urdu, since they were thought to have come from Afghanistan when first seen in Indian Subcontinent) or safed chana is the kind widely grown throughout the Mediterranean and the Indian Subcontinent. Desi is likely the earliest form since it closely resembles seeds found both on archaeological sites and the wild plant ancestor (Cicer reticulatum) of domesticated chickpeas, 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.
An uncommon black chickpea "ceci neri" is grown only in Puglia, Italy. These chickpeas are larger and blacker than the desi "kala chana" variety.
Green Chickpeas are also known as Harbhara/Harbara (हरभरा) in India (especially in the state of Maharashtra). Chana Dal is also called as Harbara Dal (हरभरा डाळ). Tender/immature harbara with skin is roasted on the coal. After roasting it well it is served by removing the skin. Commonly called as Hula (हुळा) in Marathi. Generally Harbara (हरभरा) produced in Maharashtra is Green. White gram is referred as Kabuli Chana (काबुली चणा).
Mature chickpeas can be cooked and eaten cold in salads, cooked in stews, ground into a flour called gram flour (also known as chickpea flour and besan and used frequently in Indian cuisine), ground and shaped in balls and fried as falafel, stirred into a batter and baked to make farinata or panelle.
In the Iberian Peninsula, chickpeas are very popular: In Portugal it is one of the main ingredients in Rancho, consumed with pasta, and meat, including Portuguese sausages, or with rice. they are also often used in other hot dishes with bacalhau and in soup. In Spain they are often used cold in different tapas and salads, as well as in cocido madrileño. In Egypt, chickpeas are used as a topping for Kushari.
Hummus is the Arabic word for chickpeas, which are often cooked and ground into a paste and mixed with tahini, sesame seed paste, the blend called hummus bi tahini, or chickpeas are roasted, spiced, and eaten as a snack, such as leblebi. By the end of the 20th century, hummus had become commonplace in American cuisine; by 2010, 5% of Americans consumed hummus on a regular basis, and it was present in 17% of American households.
Some varieties of chickpeas can be popped and eaten like popcorn.
Chickpeas and Bengal grams are used to make curries and are one of the most popular vegetarian foods in the Indian Subcontinent and in diaspora communities of many other countries. Popular dishes in Indian cuisine are made with chickpea flour, such as Mirchi Bajji and Mirapakaya bajji Telugu. In India, as well as in the Levant, unripe chickpeas are often picked out of the pod and eaten as a raw snack and the leaves are eaten as a green vegetable in salads.
Chickpea flour is used to make "Burmese tofu" which was first known among the Shan people of Burma. The flour is used as a batter to coat various vegetables and meats before frying, such as with panelle, a chickpea fritter from Sicily. Chickpea flour is used to make the Mediterranean flatbread socca and a patty called panisse in Provence, southern France, made of cooked chickpea flour, poured into saucers, allowed to set, cut in strips, and fried in olive oil, often eaten during Lent.
In the Philippines, garbanzo beans preserved in syrup are eaten as sweets and in desserts such as halo-halo. Ashkenazi Jews traditionally serve whole chickpeas at a Shalom Zachar celebration for baby boys.
Dried chickpeas need a long cooking time (1–2 hours) but will easily fall apart when cooked longer. If soaked for 12–24 hours before use, cooking time can be shortened by around 30 minutes. To make smooth hummus the cooked chickpeas must be processed while quite hot, since the skins disintegrate only when hot.
Chickpeas serve as an energy and protein source not only in human nutrition but also as animal feed which can lead to an increase in egg and milk production.
Secondary components, such as lecithin, polyphenols, oligosaccharides and amylase, protease, trypsin and chymotrypsin inhibitors can lead to lower nutrient availability and thus to negative effects in growth and health of animals (especially in non-ruminants). However, protein digestibility and energy availability can be improved through various treatments, such as germination, dehulling and heat. Extrusion is a very good heat technique to destroy secondary components in legumes, since the proteins are irreversibly denatured. But over-processing may decrease the nutritional value. Further, it has been shown that extrusion leads to losses in minerals and vitamins, while dry heating does not change the chemical composition.
Raw chickpeas have a relatively low trypsin and chymotrypsin inhibitor content as compared to peas, common beans and soybeans. This leads to higher nutritional values and fewer digestible problems in non-ruminants. Non-ruminant diets can be completed with 200g/kg of raw chickpeas to promote egg production and growth of birds and pigs. Higher amounts can be used when chickpeas are previously treated with heat. Ruminants have generally less problems to digest legumes with secondary components, since they can inactivate them in the rumen liquor. Their diets can be supplemented by 300g/kg or more raw chickpea seeds.
Experiments have shown that ruminants grow equally well, and produce an equal amount and quality of milk when soybean or cereal meals are replaced with chickpeas. Pigs also show the same performance, only growing pigs experience a negative effect of raw chickpea feed. Prior extrusion of chickpeas can lead to an increased performance in growing pigs. When non treated chickpeas were added to poultry diets in experiments, only the young broiler (starting period) showed worse performance. Further, fish performed equally well when their soybean or cereal diet was replaced by extruded chickpeas.
In addition, chickpea straw has a quiet high nutritive value and can therefore be included as alternative forage in ruminant diets.
India is the world leader in chickpea (Bengal gram) production, and produces some fifteen times as much as the second-largest producer, Australia. Other key producers are Pakistan, Turkey, Myanmar, Ethiopia and Iran.
|Source: UN Food & Agriculture Organization ||Source: UN Food & Agriculture Organization |
Pathogens in chickpea are the main cause for yield loss (up to 90%). One example is Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cicero that is present in most of the major pulse crop growing areas and causes regular yield damages between 10-15%. From 1978 until 1995 the worldwide number of pathogens has increased from 49 to 172 of which 35 have been recorded in India. These pathogens origin from the groups of bacteria, fungi, viruses, mycoplasma and nematodes and show a high genotypic variation. The most widely distributed pathogens are Ascochyta rabiei (35 countries), Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cicero (32 countries) Uromyces ciceris-arietini (25 countries), bean (pea) leaf roll virus (23 countries) and Macrophomina phaseolina (21 countries).
The stagnation of yield improvement over the last decades is linked to the susceptibility to pathogens. Research for yield improvement such as an attempt to increase yield from 0.8t/ha to 2t/ha by breeding cold resistant varieties, are always linked with pathogen resistance breeding as pathogens such as Ascochyta rabiei and Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cicero flourish in conditions such as cold temperature. Recently research started selecting favourable genes for pathogen resistance and othe traits through Marker-assisted selection(MAS). The use of this method is a promising sign for the future to achieve significant yield improvements.
|Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)|
|Energy||686 kJ (164 kcal)|
|Dietary fiber||7.6 g|
|Vitamin A equiv.||
|Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
Chickpea plays an important role in human diets and is widely consumed in tropical and subtropical areas. Especially for poor people it is an important source of protein and therefore alternative to meat. Chickpeas are also a source for minerals and vitamins and contain many other important nutrients.
However, the chemical structure of legume proteins often leads to a bad protein digestibility and thus to low nutritional values. Antinutritional factors, like lecithin, tannin, phytate, protease inhibitors and dietary fibre are also relevant for nutrient availability. Fibres have physiological effects on the gastrointestinal tract of humans due to the physico-chemical properties of their chemical components. These effects are: satiety changes, alteration of the gastrointestinal transit time and of the nutrient bioavailbility, flatulence, influence on body cholesterol levels and after meal serum insulin and glucose levels. Cooking (or other thermal treatments) decreases natural antinutritional factors remarkably and therefore increases nutrient (e.g. starch and protein) availability.
It has been shown that chickpeas have prominent nutritional values compared to other legume seeds. Raw and freeze-dried cooked chickpeas have lipid and lower protein contents up to three times higher compared to raw and cooked lentil legumes, common bean and pea. Further it has the lowest insoluble fibre and no detectable soluble dietary fibre content.
Compared to the FAO/WHO reference pattern, chickpea proteins are rich in essential amino acids like lysine, isoleucine, tryptophan and total aromatic amino acids. Thus, these seeds can complement the food with low amounts of these amino acids. However, a marginal lack of valine, threonine, leucine and total sulphur amino acids has been measured.
Dependent on the literature chickpeas are reported to contain 18.5MJ/kg dry matter gross energy and 12.3MJ/kg dry matter metabolizable energy. 56.2 to 78.8% of dry matter consists of carbohydrates with starch as the major component (83.9%), followed by total sugars and fibre. Lipid fraction of chickpeas ranges from 3.4 to 8.2%. Neutral lipids consist mostly of triglycerides, and polar lipids mostly of lecithin. 74.6% of dry matter of the fatty acids is unsaturated (24.3% oleic acid, 22% linoleic acid) whereas 11.6% of dry matter is saturated (10.4 palmitic acid, 13% stearic acid). Furthermore, chickpeas are a good source of minerals like Ca, P, MG, K and Fe. However, the treatment used to prepare a chickpea meal plays a significant role for the nutritive value.
Different cooking treatments do not vary in their total protein and total carbohydrate contents. Soaking-cooking of dry seeds possibly induces chemical modification of protein fibre complexes which leads to an increase in crude fibre content. Thus, protein quality can be improved through cooking due to inactivation or destruction of heat labile antinutritional factors. Further, protein digestibility, essential amino acid index and protein efficiency ratio are increased through cooking. Even if cooking lowers amino acid concentrations, such as tryptophan, sulphur, lysine, total aromatic and sulphur-containing amino acids, their contents are still higher than proposed by the FAO/WHO reference. Diffusion of reducing sugars, raffinose, sucrose and others into cooking water leads to reduction or total loss of these components. Fat contents are significantly reduced through cooking. Cooked chickpeas contain considerable lower amounts of minerals compared to raw chickpeas. Also the B-vitamins riboflavin, thiamin, niacin and pyridoxine are dissolved into the cooking water at differing amounts. The activity of hemagglutinin is completely terminated by cooking. However, also antinutritional factors are reduced by cooking, such as trypsin inhibitors, saponins, phytic acid and tannins.
Germination of chickpeas improves protein digestibility, although at a lower rate than cooking. Degradation of proteins to simple peptides through germination leads to an improved crude protein, non-protein nitrogen and crude fibre content when compared to raw chickpeas. Lysine, tryptophan, sulphur and total aromatic amino acids are decreased by germination, but most contents are still higher than proposed by the FAO/WHO reference pattern.
Seeds need energy for growth which leads to a reduction of carbohydrates and fat in germinated seeds. Thus, starch, sucrose and reducing sugars are lowered during germination. Oligosaccharides, such as stachyose and raffinose, are reduced in higher amounts during germination than during cooking. Germination significantly increases the amount of Fe, P and Zn in seeds but decreases Ca, K, Mn, Mg and Cu contents. However, minerals and B-vitamins are retained more effectively during germination when compared to cooking. Further, nutritive values of the chickpea are raised because germination leads to the formation of enzymes which decrease or remove indigestible and antinutritional factors. Phytic acids are reduced significantly, but trypsin inhibitor, tannin and saponin reduction is less effective compared to cooking. Hemagglutinin activity is reduced but not inactivated by germination.
Autoclaving, microwave cooking, boiling
Protein digestibility is improved by all treatments. Essential amino acids are slightly increased by boiling and microwave cooking when compared to autoclaving and germination. But microwave cooking is the best treatment to improve the amount of amino acids. Further, it is the best method to retain minerals and B-vitamins. Second and third best are autoclaving and boiling, respectively. Trypsin inhibitors are most effectively reduced by autoclaving, second by boiling, third by microwave cooking and least by germination. Overall, microwave cooking leads to a significantly lower loss of nutrients compared to autoclaving and boiling.
Finally, all treatments lead to an improved protein digestibility, protein efficiency ratio and essential amino acid index. All in all, microwave cooking seems to be the best method to prepare chickpeas, because of its improvement of nutritional values and its lower cooking time.
Malnutrition and insufficient micronutrient supply have been reported in many regions where chickpeas are a major part of the diet. However, this nutritional lack is not due to the consumption of chickpeas but due to the overall inadequate food supply of people. In some parts of the world young chickpea leaves are consumed as cooked green vegetables. Especially in malnourished populations it could represent as supplement for important dietary nutrients  The gross energy content of chickpea straw is 18MJ/kg dry matter while the metabolizable energy content is 7.7MJ/kg dry matter. Chickpea leaves have a significantly higher mineral content as compared to cabbage and spinach. However, earlier harvested leaves show higher mineral concentrations. No matter when the leaves are harvested most of their minerals show a higher concentration compared to other vegetables. The Ca concentration exceeds the amount measured in spinach about three times and in cabbage six times. However, these results were found in greenhouse experiments where the plants had been fertilized daily with a complete mineral solution. In natural settings, environmental factors and nutrient availability could influence the mineral concentrations in chickpea leaves. In addition, the impact of harvesting leaves on growing seeds should be tested in further experiments. Nevertheless, consumption of chickpea leaves is recommended for areas where chickpeas seeds are produced as food for humans.
References and notes
- "The Plant List: A Working List of All Plant Species". Retrieved 22 October 2014.
- "Gram" in the Encyclopædia Britannica, 9th ed., Vol. XI. 1880.
- "USDA GRIN Taxonomy". Retrieved 21 October 2014.
- Philologos (October 21, 2005). "Chickpeas — On Language". Jewish Daily Forward. Retrieved 2009-03-28.
- Garbanzo bean, Oxford Reference
- Zohary, Daniel and Hopf, Maria, Domestication of Plants in the Old World (third edition), Oxford University Press, 2000, p 110
- Nicholas Culpeper. Chick-Pease, or Cicers. The Complete Herbal (1652, originally titled The English Physitian).
- Chickpea, crnindia.com, retrieved 29 August 2008
- Chickpea, icarda.cgiar.org, retrieved 28 August 2008
- Chickpea: An ancient crop for the modern world http://exploreit.icrisat.org/page/chickpea/685/60. ICRISAT. Downloaded 26 January 2014.
- Mansfeld's World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops, Cicer arietinum subsp. arietinum, mansfeld.ipk-gatersleben.de, retrieved 31 January 2008
- Mendosa, David, Chana Dal, mendosa.com, retrieved 31 January 2008
- Marks, Gil (2010), Encyclopedia of Jewish Food, John Wiley and Sons, pp. 269-271
- There’s Hummus Among Us By Elena Ferretti, Fox News, April 05, 2010
- Deppe, Carol. The Resilient Gardener. Chelsea Green, 2010, p. 241
- Foodnetwork.com, Chickpea Fritters: Panelle, retrieved 31 January 2008
- Chickpeas Garbanzo Beans Hummus Falafel, kosherfood.about.com
- Guasanas recipe on Recidemia
- Bampidis, V.A.; Christodoulou, V. (2011). "Chickpeas (Cicer arietinum L.) in animal nutrition: A review". Animal Feed Science and Technology 168: 1–20.
- "Production of Chickpea by countries". UN Food & Agriculture Organization. 2011. Retrieved 2013-08-28.
- "Production of Chickpea by countries". UN Food & Agriculture Organization. 2014. Retrieved 2014-11-13.
- Datta, J.; Lal, N (2012). "Application of molecular markers for genetic discrimination of fusarium wilt pathogen races affecting chickpea and pigeonpea in major regions of india". European Journal of Agronomy 58 (1): 55–65. doi:10.1170/T921.
- Sheila, J.; Sharma, N. (1996). "A World list of Chickpea and Pigeonpea Pathogens". International Crops Research Institue for Semi-Arid Tropics,ICRISAT (5).
- Pfaff, T; Kahl, G (2003). "Mapping of gene-specific markers on the genetic map of chickpea ("Cicer atietinum"L)". Molecular Genetic Genomics 269: 243–251. doi:10.1007/s00438-003-0828-0.
- Millan, Teresa; Heather, J.Clarke; Kadambot, H.M.Siddique; et.al (2006). "Chickpea molecular breeding:New tools and concepts". Euphytica 147: 81–103. doi:10.1007/s10681-006-4261-4.
- El-Adawy, T.A. (2002). "Nutritional composition and antinutritional factors of chickpeas (Cicer arietinum L.) undergoing different cooking methods and germination". Plant Foods for Human Nutrition 57 (1): 83–97.
- De Almeida Costa,, G.E.; Da Silva Queiroz-Monici,, K.; Pissini Machado Reis, S.M.; Costa de Oliveira, A. (2006). "Chemical composition, dietary fibre and resistant starch contents of raw and cooked pea, common bean, chickpea and lentil legumes". Food Chemistry 94: 327–330.
- Ibrikci, H.; Knewtson, S.J.B.; Grusak, M.A. (2003). "Chickpea leaves as a vegetable green for humans: evaluation of mineral composition". Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 83: 945–950.
- Pittaway, JK; Robertson, IK; Ball, MJ (2008). "Chickpeas may influence fatty acid and fiber intake in an ad libitum diet, leading to small improvements in serum lipid profile and glycemic control". Journal of the American Dietetic Association 108 (6): 1009–13. doi:10.1016/j.jada.2008.03.009. PMID 18502235.
- Mixed Bean Salad (information and recipe) from The Mayo Clinic Healthy Recipes. Accessed February 2010.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Chickpea.|
-  Chickpea, ICRISAT
- History and nutrition of chickpeas, Casa Angola Internacional, Portugal (commercial site, in English), cai-sa.pt
- Heat and mass transfer during cooking of chickpeas (PDF)