Chorba Frik (Algerian Soup with Cracked Wheat)

Chorba Frik (Algerian Soup with Cracked Wheat)

Chorba Frik or Jari as it is known in the western part of the country is the most requested soup during Ramadan. Chorba Frik is just one of those recipes that you MUST know if you are married to an Algerian or wanting to. It’s right up there next to Couscous, lol. No pressure though. This recipe is easy to follow and just as wonderful. From the smokiness from the frik to the tanginess of the cilantro, this recipe will be sure to tantalize your tastebuds. Pair this soup with bourek, bread and harissa.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound lamb cubed (beef and or chicken can be substituted)
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 2 zucchinis cut into demi circles
  • 2 potatoes quartered
  • 2 carrots cut into 3 sections
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro
  • 2/3 cup frik (cracked wheat)
  • 1/2 cup chick peas (soaked overnight)
  • 4 mint leaves
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander seed
  • 1/2 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 8 cups hot water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • beef/chicken bouillon (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a large pot heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and sprinkle with salt to sweat.
  2. Add meat and brown quickly. Season with spices and add chickpeas.
  3. Add 1/2 of cilantro.
  4. Continue browning the meat and add the carrots and potatoes. Seer the vegetables slightly.
  5. Add the 8 cups of water to the pot and bring to a boil. Boil for 1 minute.
  6. Lower heat to a simmer and continue for 15 minutes then add zucchini. Simmer for an additional 15 minutes.
  7. Remove vegetables into a separate bowl with 1 cup of broth.
  8. Emulsify vegetables until smooth with hand blender or crush with potato masher/fork.
  9. Place vegetable puree back into pot and add frik.
  10. Simmer for an additional 15 minutes and add lemon juice. Adjust taste with salt.

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Chorba Beida (Algerian White Soup)

Chorba Baida

Chorba Beida or White Chorba as it’s called in our home is a traditional Algerian soup from Algiers and Constantine. We normally have it throughout Ramadan or even on a cold Florida night which is not often, lol. Traditionally the soup is made without vegetables. For a culture that uses more vegetables than meat I found it odd that the soup required none. But my mother in law adds potato and zucchini, so we do too. White Chorba has a counterpart known as Chorba Frik that has frik (ground durum) but for White Chorba rice, orzo, vermicelli or even angel hair is used instead.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound chicken (breast is best)
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 2 small potatoes chopped
  • 1/2 cup chickpeas (soaked overnight)
  • 1 small zucchini chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1 handful of fresh parsley chopped
  • handful of angel hair (no more than a nickel in diameter)
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 5 cups hot water
  • chicken bouillon (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a soup pot, heat olive oil and add onions. Sprinkle with a bit of salt to sweat until translucent.
  2. Add chopped chicken then season with salt, cinnamon and black pepper. Brown chicken slightly. Do not let chicken stick to pot.
  3. Then add chickpeas and potatoes. Fill pot with 5 cups hot water. Bring to a boil.
  4. Once the boil has started, let it do so for 1 minute then turn down to medium-low heat and let simmer for 30 minutes.
  5. Add zucchini to pot and continue simmering for an additional 15 minutes.
  6. In a small bowl beat the egg, and lemon.
  7. While stirring the pot profusely pour in the egg and lemon mixture. This will make the soup turn white in color. Continue stirring to throughly mix the egg in.
  8. Turn off heat and let sit for 5 minutes.
  9. Pour into bowls and garnish with parsley.
  10. Serve with boureks (Algerian Fried Pastry) and bread such as a baguette.

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