Sunday, June 13, 2010

RECIPE: Tunisian Soup with Chard and Egg Noodles

Adapted from Gourmet February 2009


1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 1/2 lbs. Swiss chard, stems and center ribs chopped and leaves coarsely chopped (reserve separately)

1 medium red onion, chopped

2 large garlic cloves, minced

3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

2 tbsp tomato paste

10 cups chicken stock (homemade or store-bought)

2 tbsp harissa

1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 (19-ounces) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

2 cups fine egg noodles


Toast cumin in a dry small heavy skillet (preferably cast-iron) over medium heat, stirring, until deeply fragrant and dark brown. Be careful not to burn the cumin seeds. Cool, then grind to a powder in a spice grinder, or with a mortar and pestle.

Heat a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add oil. Once oil is warm, add chard stems, onion, garlic, and 1/2 tsp each of ground cumin and salt, and 1/4 tsp black pepper. Cook chard stems mixture, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, about 12 minutes. Add tomato paste. Cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Add stock, harissa, and lemon juice. Bring to a boil, then lower heat. Simmer, covered, for 30 minutes.

Add chard leaves, chickpeas, and noodles with 1/2 teaspoon salt and simmer, covered, until tender, about 7 minutes. Season to taste with additional s&p, if necessary.

Serve soup sprinkled with remaining cumin.

Submitted by Vicki Burr

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