Algerian Shorba Frik

Starting today I am doing a month long marathon with “Around the world in 30 days with international ABC cooking” as the theme. Every day I will be posting a recipe from a country in alphabetical order. For first day, I chose Algeria for country starting with A. Today’s recipe is shorba frik, a soup that is usually prepared during the holy month of Ramadan and is eaten after breaking the fast. This is a popular soup in the Middle East and is known by various names. It is interesting to note that I started my last mega marathon, Indian Food Odyssey with haleem, which is also prepared during the month of Ramadan. In fact, shorba frik is similar to haleem but unlike in haleem, this shorba does not call for as many lentils as the haleem recipe calls for. This shorba is prepared by cooking together the meat and green wheat to make this flavorful soup.

Shorba Frik, Green Wheat Soup, Algerian Soup, Ramadan Soup, Around the world in 30 days with ABC Cooking

Freekeh or green wheat is harvest when the grain is yellow and moist. It is processed by sun drying, burning the straw and chaff, and then thrashed. It is the thrashing or rubbing process of the grain that gives it the name farik meaning rubbed in Arabic. This grain has low glycemic index, rich in protein and fiber. To know more about this green wheat or freekah, check their website. I could not find freekah and used coarse cracked wheat.

Shorba Frik, Green Wheat Soup, Algerian Soup, Ramadan Soup, Around the world in 30 days with ABC Cooking

Adapted: Asmaa’s recipe who did a guest post for Lubna
Cooking Time: 1 hour
Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • 358 gm Goat Meat (211 gm Bones + 147 gm Boneless Meat)
  • 1 – 1 ½ tbsp. Oil (I used 1 ½ tbsp. but felt 1 tbsp. or even less would have been sufficient)
  • ½ small Red Onion chopped (I used red but any variety would work)
  • 4 cloves Garlic chopped
  • ½ tsp. Chili Powder or Paprika
  • 1 tbsp. Tomato Paste
  • ½ tsp. Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp. Salt (adjust to taste. I do not remember if I added 1 tsp. or 1 ¼ tsp.)
  • 2 ½ – 3 cups Water or Vegetable Stock (I used water as I used meat with bones)
  • 2 tbsp. Freekeh (green wheat) (I used coarse cracked wheat as I could not find freekeh)
  • Few Chickpeas cooked approx. 2 – 3 tbsp.
  • 2 tbsp. Coriander ~ Cilantro ~ Kotmir chopped

Preparation:

  1. I used a pressure cooker but a stock pot can be used. In a 3 liter/quart pressure cooker heat oil and fry onion until translucent.
  2. Add garlic and fry for a minute.
  3. Add meat and continue frying until the meat is nicely browned, about 3 – 4 minutes.
  4. Add tomato puree or paste and cook for 2 minutes stirring it frequently.
  5. Add chili powder, salt, black pepper powder and cook for a minute stirring it regularly.
  6. Add 2 cups of water and pressure cook for 7-8 whistles on high and 5-7 minutes on low heat or until meat is very tender. Turn off the heat and let the pressure subside by itself. If using a sauce pan or stock pan, cook for almost an hour until the meat is tender.
  7. Remove the boneless meat pieces from the shorba, shred and keep aside. I followed this step but felt I could have skipped it.
  8. Add freekeh or cracked wheat to shorba and simmer for 26 – 30 minutes.
  9. Remove the bones, let it cool, add coriander leaves and run it in a blender for 10 seconds. My shorba was hot and I did not want to wait for it cool. I added coriander leaves and used my immersion blender.
  10. Add chickpeas, shredded meat and simmer shorba for few minutes. If the shorba is very thick, add ½ – 1 cup of water and then simmer it.
  11. Serve the shorba hot with some lemon wedges. My tomato paste gave the shorba required sourness and did not feel the need to add any lemon juice.

Suggestions:

  • I used bones and meat when cooking the shorba. An alternative to this is to use already cooked meat. In which case, use stock or water and skip steps 6 – 7. Add freekeh and cook for 30 minutes until cooked.
  • This shorba can be made without meat. In that case skip step 6 & 7, and add more chickpeas or as desired to the shorba.

22 Responses to Algerian Shorba Frik

  1. Oh now we know what that bowl was..:)..very nicely shot Usha..

  2. As always I am a fan of the clicks…and nice country choicce..

  3. I too was inspired by this post and had bookmarked this recipe for A. But since frikkeh isn’t avbl in India I thought it better to not do it. The pic is so simple, yet elegant! Love your setting!

  4. Green wheat is new .. Lovely clicks Usha

  5. Great pictures Usha! A good start to the mega marathon.

  6. So glad you liked the recipe and made it your own, i have never eaten goat but i imagine it would be delicious in this soup and it definitely looks that way!

  7. Wow lovely pic Usha and same pinch nice choice of the soup and what do mean green wheat? is it wheat grass?

    • Padma, green wheat is not wheat grass. Green wheat is similar to wheat only difference being green wheat is wheat harvest when the grain is still young and green. Check this link for more details about green wheat. I will include this link even in the post. I have not seen green wheat as I could not find it the near by stores. http://www.greenwheatfreekeh.com/

  8. Pics looks stunning as usual.And nice soup too :)

  9. Stunning pictures, Usha

  10. green wheat in my home town is used to make the first kheer and then harvested further…i was always interested in tasting the haleem dish and wish to do it some day…having heard so much about it…i loved your clicks and the dish is so inviting…

  11. Pictures looks stunning Usha , wonderful choice for the start . Looking forward to see more recipes…

  12. what a flavorful soup. You should have asked me – I could have brought you some freekeh

    • The website I checked said Whole Food in my area carries it. I was all prepared to cook it that day only to be disappointed that the store doesn’t carry it as listed on the website. Since I was all prepared to make it that day, I went ahead with cracked wheat. I should have asked you where I could get it.

  13. Now the picture mystery is out. Wow this is an awesome soup. Generally I do not read non veg recipes for i do not know the flavours that give the taste it has( and I am drooling a lot Shhhhhhhhhhhhhh!) but this time I did and loved it.

  14. I want to have a bowl of this shorba frik, such a comforting soup while the weather is down like we are having today.

  15. I bought Freekah from Costco a while back, but like you said looks and tastes very very similar to cracked wheat. Shorba looks hearty. Looking forward to your creations this month Usha.

  16. Great recipe.. Though I’m not participating this time.. A great way to learn different recipes around the world.superb pics..

  17. Love that deep color the dish has!!!

  18. That must be a hearty dish and looking forward to your dishes this marathon.

  19. Great dish with lovely pictures..

  20. Never heard of freekah. the soup looks very nice..

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