BUL­GAR WHEAT WITH CHICKEN

Serves 6 Prep 45 mins /cook­ing 40 mins

Taste & Flavors - - LEBANESE CUISINE -

IN­GRE­DI­ENTS

• Sun­flower oil, for fry­ing • 2 aubergines, chopped into cubes • 500g coarse brown bul­gar wheat • 500ml cold wa­ter • 1 small onion, chopped • 1 gar­lic clove, crushed • 2 tbsp cin­na­mon • 1 tbsp Le­banese seven-spice mix • 1 tsp salt • ½ tbsp black pep­per • 5 toma­toes, chopped • 2 tbsp tomato purée • 500ml tomato juice • 500ml chicken stock • 150g tinned, drained chick­peas • 6 skin­less chicken thighs, bone in • 3 tbsp olive or vegetable oil • 150ml hot wa­ter

PREPA­RA­TION

Start by fry­ing the aubergine un­til golden. Heat about 2cm oil in a medium sauté pan for a cou­ple of min­utes. To check it’s hot enough, add a cube of aubergine; if it siz­zles, it’s ready. De­pend­ing on how big your pan is, put a quar­ter or half of the chopped aubergine into the pan and fry un­til golden. Drain on kitchen pa­per. Con­tinue un­til all the aubergine is cooked. Set aside. Put the bul­gar wheat into a bowl and cover with the cold wa­ter. Leave to soak. Pre­heat the oven to 190°C/170°C fan/gas mark 5. Heat 2 ta­ble­spoons of oil in the pan and sauté the onion and gar­lic over a low heat for 10 min­utes. Stir in three quar­ters of the spices and half the salt and pep­per, and cook for 1–2 min­utes. Stir in the chopped tomato and cook for a fur­ther 5 min­utes un­til it has cooked down and soft­ened, and the mix­ture looks like a sauce. Add the tomato purée and pour in the tomato juice and stock. Sea­son, add the bul­gar wheat and mix ev­ery­thing to­gether, then add the chick­peas. Cover the pan with a lid and cook for 20–25 min­utes over a very low heat. Put the chicken into a roast­ing tin and sea­son with the re­main­ing spices, salt and pep­per. Add 1 ta­ble­spoon of oil and toss to coat the thighs in the sea­son­ings. Roast in the oven for about 10 min­utes, un­til they’re start­ing to turn golden, then re­duce the heat to 170°C/150°C fan/gas mark 3. Pour the hot wa­ter into the tin, cover the whole thing with foil and con­tinue to roast for 15–20 min­utes, un­til tender. Check the bul­gar wheat is cooked, then fold in the chopped aubergine and serve with the chicken.

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