Sunday, May 9, 2010

Chicken Chorba with Walnuts for Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays

Flipping through May's Food & Wine magazine, I found this recipe for Chicken Chorba with Walnuts, a healthy North African-style soup/stew. Made with just a few ingredients I had stocked in my pantry, I just needed to pick up some organic chicken thighs to make it. The recipe doesn't specify what to serve it with, so I made a quick batch of basic couscous and made my chorba with extra broth for a filling but not heavy dinner.

You can find the recipe in the May 2010 issue of Food & Wine or online

Food & Wine says, "The chicken in this saffron-and-ginger-scented chorba (the North African name for soup) is an excellent source of protein, while the walnuts are packed with antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids, superheroes for the heart."

Chicken Chorba with Walnuts
Edmond Orsoni, Food & Wine, May 2010
(Makes 4 Servings)
Active Time: 20 min / Total Time: 1 Hr

1/3 cup walnut halves
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Eight 3-ounce, skinless bone-in chicken thighs, trimmed of excess fat
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 onion, halved and thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
Small pinch of saffron threads
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro

Preheat the oven to 350°. Spread the walnuts in a pie plate and toast in the oven for 8 minutes, until fragrant. Let cool.

In a large, deep skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat, turning once, until lightly browned on both sides, about 8 minutes total. Transfer the chicken to a plate. Add the onion, garlic and ginger to the skillet and cook over moderate heat until tender, about 6 minutes. Stir in the broth, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the skillet. Add the cumin and saffron.

Return the chicken with any juices to the skillet and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat until the chicken is tender and cooked through, about 30 minutes. Transfer the chicken to shallow bowls. Season the broth with salt and pepper and spoon it over the chicken. Sprinkle with the walnuts and cilantro and serve.

Make Ahead: The chicken and broth can be refrigerated overnight. Sprinkle with the walnuts and cilantro just before serving.

Notes: One Serving 305 cal, 16 gm fat, 2.7 gm sat fat, 5 gm carb, 1 gm fiber.

Notes/Results: Simple and good. I love anything with ginger, garlic and cumin, and the saffron adds a touch of flavor and nice color. The onions and chicken were tender and well-flavored and I liked the crunch of the toasted walnuts. I made just a few changes--the skinless organic chicken thighs I found were boneless (the recipe called for bone-in) so I cooked them a little less time. I toasted my walnuts in a pan since I was at the stove anyway and didn't want to heat up the oven, and I wanted more broth so I doubled the garlic, ginger and spices and added about 2 1/2 cups of the chicken stock. This would also be nice with more veggies and maybe a hint of something spicier than the extra black pepper I added, but still very good for a nourishing dinner.

Let's see who is here in the Souper Sundays kitchen this week:

Yenta Mary from Food Floozie is back this week with a vibrant Exotic Fish and Vegetable Stew. She says, "While this photo is, indeed, representative of the dish, it really and truly does not do it justice. The fish, artichoke hearts, tomatoes and olives are all in evidence; but sadly, the vibrancy just did not translate well .... Your home will smell amazing, exceeded only by the taste of this exotic stew."

And another gorgeous hearty stew-like dish from Christine at Kits Chow, this Cantonese Braised Short Ribs with Chu Hou Sauce. Christine says, "This is a homey, Cantonese dish that everybody loves. The beef is usually braised in an earthenware casserole but a slow cooker or dutch oven works just as well. I make a big batch and freeze the stew in individual servings. Need a quick bowl of noodles? How about soup noodles with braised beef. Or eat the beef stew with hot rice. Ladle the gravy over it and you have a very satisfying meal."

A new face at Souper Sundays is Debbie from Debbi Does Dinner...Healthy & Low Calorie, joining us from Minnesota and here with a Chunky Chili to share. She says, "This is one of my original chili recipes. This was before I experimented with different flavors and spices. I have many, many chili recipes I like to make but this one is simple and is very good. It uses the chili packet. Actually, this time, I put two chili packets in here. It needed more flavor and I wasn't in the mood to deal with chili powder and spices." Welcome Debbi!

Reeni from Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice is here with a classic comfort bowl, Broccoli Cheddar Cheese Soup. Reeni says, "I have a recipe for a deliciously simple soup today: Broccoli and Cheddar Cheese. I ate Panera's Broccoli Cheddar Soup for lunch the other day and while it was totally satisfying at the time I wanted more! So much so that the very next day I adapted this Food Network knock-off. Although it is similar to Panera's it isn't an exact rendition. My version is thicker and has a stronger, fresher broccoli flavor compared to Panera's. It's every bit as good as Panera's if not better, and totally satisfied my every craving."

Kim from Stirring the Pot has been having fun cooking up a storm with a new cookbook, "Home Cooking with Trisha Yearwood" and she made this beautiful Strawberry Salad from it. Kim says, "A crunchy topping is made from crushed ramen noodles, sunflower seeds, and sliced almonds. A combination of romaine lettuce and spinach is topped with sliced strawberries, Parmesan cheese, the crunchy topping; then drizzled with a gorgeous dressing made of red wine vinegar, canola oil, sugar, minced garlic, and paprika. Crunch, sweet, tangy, deliciousness! I could quite literally eat this salad every day!"

And Kat from Our Adventures in Japan is here with a simple, delicious Tofu Salad. She says, "Friday, it rained for most of the day, so I stayed indoors. Not having moved around much during the day, I wasn't too hungry when it came to dinner time. I ended up making something easy and light.Tofu Salad. Instead of the usual shoyu based dressing, I used Chinese Chicken Salad dressing. The results...delicious. I think we'll be having this salad version as the weather starts to warm up."

Natashya from Living in the Kitchen with Puppies has a flavorful salad to share, made easy with a rotisserie chicken. She says, "Chutney Chicken Salad is mild and sweet and delicious, wanting only a while to rest in the fridge while you go on and tend to other matters. A very agreeable salad indeed. You should use the yellow curry powder which is somewhat mild and creates a great color."

So there we go--a bevy of yummy soups and salads this week. Thanks to all who joined in. If you have a soup, salad or sandwich that you would like to share, click on the Souper Sundays logo on the side bar for all of the details.

Happy Mother's Day to all the Mom's out there.

Have a great week!


  1. What a fabulous assortment! I am so happy to have found this site, and proud to be among such amazing cooks!!!

  2. great round-up as always. thanks for including me!

  3. Your soup looks great! Nice recipes, thanks!

  4. Yum, that soup is a new one for me - looks great! Love the addition of walnuts, they seem to be having their time in the superfoods limelight right now.
    Thanks for the delicious round-up Deb!

  5. Your soup looks wonderful, Deb. I always love the crunch of toasted nuts - yum! Thanks for another great roundup. Everything really looks great.
    I've been seeing a lot of tofu recipes lately and the picture in your roundup has me thinking I should give it a try again (it's been several years since my last attempt).

  6. That looks like one delicious soup...although I agree - more veggies please!

    And what a great round-up, as usual!

  7. It must have gone cold again - so many comforting stews and soups!

  8. Wonderful assortment of mouthwatering dishes! I am always amazed at the creativity and energy of all these fabulous cooks!

  9. My selection of soup recipes has never been bigger! I just keep bookmarking and bookmarking from these posts. :) The walnuts sound fantastic in this soup. We are roasting up a chicken today and I think this will be perfect for the leftovers.

  10. Your North African Chorba looks/sounds SO amazing! I love that there's such variety, and not just chicken soup (much as I adore it!) ... :)

  11. Chicken Chorba sounds very intriguing, I would love to try this specialty!

  12. I loved your recipe, Deb. I've never seen the soup before but plan to give it a try when the weather is appropriate. The round-up was great - as usual. Have a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

  13. Wow, nice round-up :-) Everything looks yummie!

  14. That is such a unique and delicious sounding soup! I especially like the walnuts in it. And a wonderful round-up - thanks for including me!


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