- In a bowl, place 1 cup of the chickpeas. Set aside.
- In a saucepan, brown the onion and garlic in the oil. Add the remaining chickpeas, the potato, bay leaf, red pepper flakes, broth and tomato paste. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over medium heat for about 15 minutes or until the potato is tender.
- Remove the bay leaf. In a blender, purée the mixture until smooth. Strain and pour back into the saucepan.
- Add the pasta and cook over medium heat until al dente, stirring frequently to prevent the pasta from sticking to the bottom of the saucepan. Add a little broth or water if necessary. The texture should be thick, close to a purée. Add the reserved chickpeas. Adjust the seasoning.
- Ladle the soup into serving bowls. Drizzle with olive oil and season with pepper if desired. Sprinkle with the cheese and fresh herbs.