Chicken/ Dinner/ Lunch/ Middle Eastern recipes/ One-pot recipes/ Soups & Stews

Moroccan Spiced Chicken Soup with Dried Apricots, Bulgur and Chickpeas

27 September 2022

A warming and hearty soup with Middle Eastern flavours and a touch sweetness from the apricots to balance it all out.

Quite a few years ago, before I actually knew how to cook, I had a soup at a restaurant (which now no longer exists). I was blown away by the flavours and never had anything like it before or after.

Earlier this week I was pottering around in the kitchen and made a no recipe Moroccan spiced chicken soup , I just added ingredients which I felt would work together. It wasn’t until I tasted it that I recognised this as the soup I’ve been looking for all these years!

The problem with cooking with no recipe is that it’s easy to forget what I actually did and the ingredients I used, so I wrote them down the same night. Phew! 

Note before you get started: this soup is ready in about 50 minutes but even better if you have time to let it rest for an hour or 2 so the bulgur can soak up all the stock and all the flavours can marry together. Even better the next day!

Moroccan Spiced Chicken Soup with Dried Apricots, Bulgur and Chickpeas

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Dinner, lunch Middle Eastern, Moroccan
By Saffron Serves: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes Cooking Time: 40 minutes Total Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients

  • The chicken:
  • 2 chicken thighs
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp ras el hanout
  • 2 tsp cumin powder
  • 2 tsp koriander powder
  • 1 tsp curcuma powder
  • Salt & Pepper
  • The rest of the ingredients
  • 1 large white onion, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 carrot, finely cubed
  • 1 parsnip, peeled & chopped into 1 cm cubes
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 3 medium sized tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 150 g dried apricots, roughly chhopped
  • 1.5 liter chicken stock
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 slices ginger
  • 1 can 400g chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup bulgur wheat
  • Fresh Parsley to serve

Instructions

1

Note before you get started: this soup is ready in about 50 minutes but even better if you have time to let it rest for an hour or 2 so the bulgur can soak up all the stock and all the flavours can marry together. Even better the next day!

The chicken

2

Mix all the chicken spices together into a large bowl and add the chicken. Massage the marinade into the meat and set aside while prepping the rest of the ingredients for the soup, ± 15 minutes.

3

Heat a drop of olive oil in a heavy based soup pot and add the chicken pieces, searing on all sides.

4

When browned on all sides (the chicken is still raw in the middle) remove from the pan and set aside, leaving behind the spiced oil.

The soup

5

Add an extra drop of olive oil to the pan and add the onion. Sauté for 2-3 minutes until translucent and fragrant, then add the garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes.

6

Add the celery, carrot and parsnip and mix well making sure everything is coated with the spiced oil.

7

Add the tomatoes and dried apricots and mix well. Sauté for 2-3 minutes until the tomatoes have broken down a bit.

8

Deglaze the pan with the chicken stock, scraping all the goodness from the bottom of the pan.

9

Add the cinnamon stick, bay leaves, ginger, bulgur and chickpeas. Let simmer for 15 minutes.

10

Add the chicken back to the pan, including the resting juices, and simmer for another 10 minutes.

11

When the chicken is cooked through remove from the pan and set aside to let cool, let the soup simmer on low heat.

12

Using 2 forks shred the chicken into bitesize pieces and return back to the pan including all the resting juices.

13

The soup is done when the bulgur is cooked through (The bulgur will soak up more of the stock and flavours over time, so the soup will become thicker within a few hours if you wait for a while).

14

Serve with fresh parsley over the top and some fresh crusty bread.

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