Friday, June 19, 2009

Moroccan Spiced ChickPea Spinach Soup

Moroccan cuisine has been influenced by Indian cuisine.Morocco being a port there has been several influences on its culture and cuisine and it helped evolve a definite Moroccan cuisine which can be very hearty to Indian tongue.The spices we grew up with travel with us to Morocco.We never feel that its not Indian,though ofcourse some changes are definitely there.

I found an intriguing ChickPea and Spinach soup here and on trying it found that it perfectly suits my spicy tongue and is very hearty.It is made of chickpeas and spinach as we know from its name,but another secret ingredient here is apricots.

Ingredients:
Chickpeas : 1/2 cup
Spinach: 1 cup + chopped or 1 small bag of baby spinach leaves
Onion:1 medium
Garlic: 1-2 cloves crushed

Chilli Powder: 1-2 tsps per taste
Cinnamon: 2 tsps or more as per taste
Tomato Paste: 2 tbsp
Dried Apricots: 4+ or almost 1/4 cup chopped

Lemon juice: 1 tbsp or 1/2 lemon
Lemon Zest :zest of 1 lemon (I did not add)
Veg broth : 2 cup+

Salt & Pepper

Preparation:
Presoak chickpeas and cook till soft.Finely chop onions and crush garlic.Chop spinach or leave as such if using baby spinach.

Heat olive oil in a pan.Add chopped onion and saute till raw smell goes.Add crushed garlic and saute till the mix softens.Add cinnamon powdered and chilli powder and cook for 1 more minute.Add tomato paste and cook again for 2-3 minutes.Add chopped apricots,lemon juice & zest and veg broth and half of the cooked chicpeas.I also added the water in which the chickpeas was cooked.Cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes.Allow it cool a little bit.

Puree the mix in a blender in batches if needed.Return the soup to the pan and add the remaining chickpeas.If the soup is too thick add more water /stock. Add salt and little papper and bring to boil.Reduce the heat to a simmer and then add the chopped spinach and cook for a few more minutes till spinach gets done.

Serve hot with more pepper garnish or a swirl of sourcream or yoghurt to reduce the spicy heat.I did not go for the yogurt option.

A warm bowl of ChickPea Spinach soup is perfect for Jacqueline of Tinned Tomatoes where NoCroutonsRequired has leaves as the theme.

Another bowl of hearty chickpea soup travels to Apu of AnnaRasa for Legume Love Affair -Twelfth an event by Susan

The Soup being vegan is perfect for IAVW-Moroccan hosted by Lavi of HomeCooks, an event by Vaishali

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