The origin of chickpea appears to have been centered in the Near East, specifically it is believed to be from present-day Iraq between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, where it may have been cultivated as early as 9000 BC.
Its later spread is unknown, but it seems confirmed that the Carthaginians introduced it to Spain in the 3rd century AD. JC From and was part of the Spanish diet, which later spread throughout the African continent.
It was widely cultivated by the Romans from the 1st century BC.
From this date, and until the 12th century, there is a period where the spread and trajectory of the plant is unknown, although it is currently widespread in various countries of the world.
It has long been a fruit despised by others because it was called “food for the poor” and was being replaced by other products of American origin until the concept of the “Mediterranean diet” gave it a very bad poster. Was. It has been reintroduced and is consumed today so much that demand in Spain is less than supply, forcing it to be imported from Mexico and Turkey.
takes advantage of
The classic product that has long been called “food for the poor” is far from the current reality.
A food widely used by the Spanish, where it is characteristic of our geography and our typical cuisine, with the dish of our”cocido”or”puchero de garbanzos”.
Chickpea seeds are used in Mediterranean culinary recipes.
Its edible flour is also used.
importance of crop
The legume is particularly widespread and cultivated in Asia, covering about 92 percent of the world area and with significant areas in Pakistan and Turkey. The second producing continent is Africa with Ethiopia as the main producer, followed by Malawi and Tanzania. Australia in Oceania and Mexico in Central America are other large producers.
In Europe it is mainly cultivated in Spain, accounting for 85 percent of the total, followed by Italy and Bulgaria.
Planted only in warm regions, it is not present in countries in the Northern Hemisphere where it is unknown.
In Spain it is represented in the eastern part of the peninsula, especially in Andalusia, in the provinces of Seville, Córdoba and to a lesser extent in Jaén.
Also important in Extremadura and Castilla – La Mancha, widely planted in the province of Toledo. The chickpeas of Salamanca, León and Zamora are well known, although the planted area is small compared to the rest of the previous Spanish regions.
It contains high amounts of mineral salts, mainly magnesium, iron and calcium, and also significant amounts of vitamins B, C and niacin.
Due to its high fiber content, its preparation relieves bloating and combats constipation and also has properties to lower high cholesterol levels. It has a high calorie content.
Its drawbacks are its low digestibility and for diabetics and people with slow digestion.
It is indicated in remedies to relieve bloating and has long been recommended for lactating women.