This is a thick, flavoursome peasant-style soup, originally from Italy. After discovering how nutritious bulgur is at the Bulgur Festival in Gaziantep, south-east Turkey a few years ago, I decided to use it as the thickener instead of pasta. It works beautifully and adds even more goodness to this hearty soup.
You'll find my story about the Bulgur Festival here.
- Prep Time : 30-40 minutes
- Cook Time : 40-45 minutes
- Yield : 4
- extra virgin olive oil - 125ml (1/2 cup)
- garlic - 2 cloves, peeled and smashed
- fresh rosemary - 4 generous sprigs, washed and dried
- diced Roma tomatoes - 1 x 400g tin
- chickpeas - 2 x 400g tins
- chicken stock - 625ml- 700ml
- salt and freshly ground black pepper - to taste
- coarse bulgur (or use small pasta such as 'lumachine') - 1/2 cup
- freshly grated parmesan (optional) - to serve
Heat the oil in a medium pan and add the garlic. Let it sizzle for a few minutes, then add the fresh rosemary sprigs and the tomatoes. Leave to simmer gently for 20 minutes - this is an important step as it give the soup depth of flavour.
Drain one tin of chickpeas in a sieve and rinse well under cold running water. Place in the food processor blender with some of the stock and puree. Set aside.
Drain the other tin of chickpea and rinse well. Add the whole chickpeas and chickpea puree to the tomato mixture along with the remaining stock - you can add as much stock as you like, but remember this is meant to be a thick soup. Season to taste.
Cook the bulgur separately in a saucepan of boiling water - it will need about 10 minutes, drain and add to the soup. Stir well to combine. Remove the rosemary sprigs and garlic cloves. Re-heat and serve immediately. A little freshly grated parmesan over the top is a good addition.