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Moroccan Vegetable Soup (Chorba)

WebMD Recipe from

Total Time: 1 hr 40 mins

Moroccan Vegetable Soup (Chorba)

Hearty with chunks of beef or lamb, plenty of vegetables and a bit of pasta, this Moroccan soup gets its rich, golden-orange color from turmeric.


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 1 pound beef stew meat, such as chuck or lamb stew meat, shoulder or leg, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 6 cups reduced-sodium beef broth or water
  • 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 2 small turnips, peeled and diced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, leaves included, thinly sliced
  • 12 sprigs flat-leaf parsley, plus more leaves for garnish
  • 8 sprigs fresh cilantro, plus more leaves for garnish
  • 1 large zucchini, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 2 ounces angel hair pasta, capellini (about 1/2 cup), broken into small pieces, or orzo, preferably whole-wheat
  • 1-2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • Pinch of saffron threads


Step 1
Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and turmeric; stir to coat. Add meat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Add broth (or water), tomatoes and their juice, turnips, carrots, celery and saffron. Tie parsley and cilantro sprigs together with kitchen string and add to the pot. Bring the soup to a boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer. Cook until the meat is tender, 45 to 50 minutes.
Step 2
Stir in zucchini and cook, covered, until soft, 8 to 10 minutes. Add pasta and cook until soft, 4 to 10 minutes, depending on the type of pasta. Discard the parsley and cilantro sprigs. Season with salt (start with 1 teaspoon if you’re using beef broth; add more if you’re using water) and pepper. Serve sprinkled with parsley and/or cilantro leaves, if desired.

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