No, this is not an actual Middle Eastern dish. This is the conglomeration of what can I make for dinner with a chicken carcass, the preserved lemons sitting in the back of the fridge, the kale and roasted garden tomatoes stashed in the freezer, and that a small jar of baharat lurking in the back of my cupboard? So it’s really just chicken soup with a Middle Eastern flavor profile. I intended to use chickpeas in the soup instead of couscous, but that is the one thing that I didn’t have on hand. Side note for the gluten-free contingent – use chickpeas instead of the couscous, and you’ll be in the clear.
- 2 small or 1 large Onion (halve the onions, but only remove the outer layer of skin, leaving the remaining skin intact)
- 4 cloves of Garlic (don’t peel your garlic)
- 1 tsp Coriander Seeds
- 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
- 1 tsp Black Pepper Corns
- 1 Cinnamon Stick
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tbsp Baharat
- 1 Chicken Carcass (or a couple quarts of chicken broth)
- 1 preserved Lemon
- 3-4 quarts Water (~ 2 quarts if you are using pre-made chicken broth)
- 1 cup of diced Roasted Tomatoes (you can also use canned diced tomatoes)
- 1 cup of chopped Kale
- 1 cup of shredded, cooked Chicken
- 3/4 cup Couscous
- 1/2 cup Olives
- Make the broth.
- Place the chicken carcass at the bottom of a large stew pot, and fill the pot with water until the carcass has been fully submerged. (If you are using pre-made chicken broth, combine it with some water, and then proceed to cook it in the same way as if you are using a chicken carcass)
- In a hot cast iron pan toast your spices (except for the baharat and salt) before transferring them into the stew pot.
- Toast the onions and garlic before also adding them to the stew pot.
- Add the baharat, salt, and preserved lemon to the stew pot.
- Cover the pot, and bring it to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to a simmer, and let your broth meld for a couple of hours.
- Drain the broth of the chicken carcass, whole spices, preserved lemon, onion, and garlic, by running it through a large colander into a second soup pot.
- Once you have the clear spiced broth in the second pot, reheat it, and add in your vegetables and shredded chicken.