Chickpeas are round, tan-colored members of the pea family that are often referred to as dried beans. They have a firm texture and a mildly nutlike flavor. Available dried or precooked in cans, they are also known as garbanzo beans or ceci beans. Dried beans require soaking to rehydrate them.
To sort and rinse dried chickpeas:
Spread in a single layer on a platter or tray. Pick out and discard any discolored and misshapen peas and impurities such as small stones and fibers. Transfer the chickpeas to a colander or sieve. Rinse well under cold running water.To soak and rehydrate dried chickpeas: Place the cleaned peas in a bowl of fresh cold water to cover and soak for 3-8 hours at room temperature; drain well. Or, place in a saucepan with water to cover, bring to a boil, remove from the heat, and soak for 1 1/2 hours; drain well.For other bean varieties, see adzuki, borlotti, cannellini, cranberry, fava, flageolet, Great Northern, green, Italian green, kidney, lima, pinto, red, white (navy), and yellow wax beans, and green lentils and lentils.