Moroccan couscous soup

111 Matt Tebbutt recipe template

Preparation time

Cooking time
30 mins to 1 hour

Serves 2

By Matt Tebbutt
From Saturday Kitchen


For the confit lemon

  • 50g/1¾oz caster sugar
  • few peppercorns
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced

For the soup

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 red onion, sliced (or any onion, including spring onion)
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 tsp hot pepper paste
  • 2 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and diced
  • 1 courgette, diced
  • 3 fresh tomatoes, chopped (or tinned)
  • 400g tin chickpeas (or any tinned beans or pulses), drained and rinsed
  • 500ml/18fl oz chicken stock (or any stock)
  • 100g/3½oz couscous
  • 125g tin mackerel (or any tinned fish, such as sardines or pilchards), chopped
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander (or any soft herb)


  1. To make the confit lemon, place the sugar and 50ml/2fl oz water in a saucepan over a medium heat and simmer until the sugar has dissolved. Add the peppercorns and simmer for a few more minutes. Add the lemon, remove from the heat, cover and leave overnight.

  2. To make the soup, heat the oil in a large saucepan and gently fry the onion, garlic, hot pepper paste and cumin seeds for 5–8 minutes. Add the sweet potato, courgette, tomato, chickpeas and stock. Simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in the couscous, mackerel and coriander and cook for another 5 minutes, until the couscous is cooked through.

  3. Garnish the soup with the confit lemon and serve immediately.

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