Freekeh Lamb Soup شوربة فريكة

Freekeh is an ancient whole grain well known across the Middle East. The grain itself is harvested while it is still green, then roasted and rubbed and that’s what gives it a nutty smoky flavor. Freekeh is high in protein and fiber and has much more flavor than quinoa or rice. It can be used in a variety of recipes, such as salads or as an alternative for rice in numerous dishes, as with chicken or meat, as well in many other vegan options. You can also check out my stuffed chicken with freekeh recipe available here Stuffed Chicken with Freekeh محشي دجاج بالفريكة

When buying freekeh make sure you buy a brand that has the authentic texture of freekeh, and it looks close to the picture here:

This is a brand that I like, most good quality freekeh can be found at any store that sells Middle Eastern products:

Today I’m using it in this soup recipe.

I’m not a big fan of soups, however, in winter I do like to enjoy a warm bowl of soup. This recipe is one of my mother’s favorite, I remember when we’re kids and she would make it on a cold winter day, she always bragged about how good it was. Back then I didn’t like it that much, and I always wondered why my mom loves this dish so much. As older as I get I realized how delicious this recipe is, and even my son Faris when he had it, he’s like “Mama is this from Araby food, it is so yummy.”

Here is how to make freekeh soup.

The steps for this recipe are really easy and even easier if you have a pressure cooker, I love to use the pressure cooker especially if I’m making lamb. Lamb meat takes a longer time to cook, but if it’s cooked in a pressure cooker it saves you a lot of time.

I start by sautéing onions with oil until golden brown, then I add the meat. I have meat on a bone, it’s good to have the bone for the soup as it gives a good bone broth, you can also use just bones for this recipe. I mix the meat with a pinch of spices (nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, and salt) prior to adding it over the onions, sauté lamb for 2-3 minutes until the color changes into more brownish. Add freekeh, no need to soak it since it’s in the pressure cooker, otherwise, I usually prefer to soak the freekeh for 10-15 minutes prior to cooking. However, prior to adding it to the pot, I recommend to cover the freekeh with water, often you can find few of the extra skin of the wheat which will float on the top you can just remove it with a spoon, then rinse and add over meat. Cover with boiled water, allspice and salt seal the pot and let it cook for about 40 minutes. Once done, turn the heat off and let it cool for 10-15 minutes before opening the lid. Keep in mind because the freekeh has a thick texture this will look like more a stewy liquid dish, so don’t expect this soup to be very liquidy.

If you don’t have a pressure cooker, use regular pot follow the first two steps, and start by cooking the lamb alone. Then add freekeh halfway through cooking. I would recommend starting with 4 cups of boiled water. If you prefer it more liquid, a half cup of boiled water can be added towards the end.

This recipe makes 4 servings

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Freekeh Lamb Soup شوربة فريكة

  • Author: Wafa Shami

Description

Freekeh is an ancient whole grain well known across the Middle East. The grain itself is harvested while it is still green, then roasted and rubbed and that’s what gives it a nutty smoky flavor. Freekeh is high in protein and fiber and has much more flavor than quinoa or rice. It can be used in a variety of recipes, such as salads or as an alternative for rice in numerous dishes, as with chicken or meat, as well in many other vegan options.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 pound lamb with bone
  • 1 cup freekeh
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 6 cups of boiled water
  • a pinch of nutmeg and cinnamon powder’
  • 1 teaspoon allspice
  • salt

Instructions

  1. In a pressure cooker sauté onions with oil over high heat until golden brown.
  2. Mix meat with a pinch of spices (nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, and salt) add over the onions, sauté for 2-3 minutes until meat color changes into more brownish.
  3. Wash and rinse freekeh then add to the pot.
  4. Cover with boiled water, add allspice and salt, seal the cover and let it cook for about 40 minutes.
  5.  
  6. Turn it off and let it cool for 10-15 minutes before opening the lid.

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