Baharat chicken with orzo salad and tabbouleh

111 Matt Tebbutt recipe template

Preparation time
30 mins to 1 hour

Cooking time
10 to 30 mins

Serves 4

By Saliha Mahmood-Ahmed
From Saturday Kitchen


For the orzo salad

  • 6 red or yellow peppers, halved and seeds removed
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 250g/9oz orzo
  • 2 oranges
  • 1 lemon, juice only
  • 1 tsp sumac
  • 50g/1¾oz fresh flatleaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp rose harissa
  • handful roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
  • handful pomegranate seeds (optional)
  • salt

For the tabbouleh

  • 250g/9oz broccoli florets, grated
  • 250g/9oz cauliflower florets, grated
  • 125g/4½oz fresh flatleaf parsley, finely sliced
  • 30g/1oz fresh mint leaves, finely sliced
  • 30g/1oz fresh dill, finely sliced
  • 40g/1½oz fine bulgur wheat, soaked in boiling water for 30 minutes
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 2 tomatoes, finely diced, seeds and juice retained
  • 1 tsp Lebanese allspice powder, plus extra if needed
  • 3 large lemons, juice only, plus extra if needed
  • 1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
  • 4 tbsp olive oil

For the baharat chicken

  • 350g/12oz minced chicken thighs
  • 1 heaped tsp baharat spice mix
  • 5 dried apricots, finely chopped
  • ½ red onion, finely diced
  • handful finely chopped fresh coriander
  • 1 tsp salt
  • vegetable oil, to shallow fry


  1. To make the orzo, preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6. Place the peppers on a baking tray, drizzle over 2 tablespoons of olive oil and season with salt. Roast for 30 minutes until the peppers are softened completely and charred on the edges. Set aside to cool, then slice into smaller pieces.

  2. Meanwhile, boil the orzo in heavily salted water, according to the packet instructions. It usually takes about 5 minutes. Drain and leave to cool completely.

  3. Slice the top and bottom from each orange. Use even downward strokes to slice the peel away from the flesh. Discard the peel. Cut between the membranes to segment the pieces of orange flesh. Squeeze out any juice from the remains into a small cup or jug.

  4. Warm the cold orzo in the microwave for a minute, then transfer to a large bowl. Add the orange segments and juice, the roasted peppers, remaining olive oil, lemon juice, sumac, parsley and harissa. Mix, taste and add salt if preferred. Give the salad one final mix before transferring to a large serving platter. Garnish with the hazelnuts and pomegranate seeds, if using.

  5. To make the tabbouleh, mix the grated broccoli, cauliflower, parsley, mint and dill in a large bowl. Rinse and drain the soaked bulgur in cold water, fluff up the grains and add them to the herb mixture. Add the onion and tomatoes (with seeds and juice) and give everything a good stir to combine. Add the allspice, lemon juice, pomegranate molasses, olive oil and a generous amount of salt. Toss everything together and taste. Add more salt, allspice and lemon juice if preferred.

  6. To make the baharat chicken, place the minced chicken, baharat spice mix, apricots, onion and coriander in a large bowl. Season with the salt and mix well to combine. Rub vegetable oil all over your hands and divide the mince mixture into 8 equal portions. Take each portion and shape into round, flat patties, approximately 1cm/½in thick.

  7. Pour some vegetable oil into a deep non-stick frying pan until the oil is around 5mm/ ¼in deep. Place over a medium heat and once hot, gently place the chicken patties in the oil, two or three at a time. The fat should start sizzling immediately around the patties – if it doesn’t, turn the heat up. Cook for about 3 minutes and once the patties are golden on one side, flip over and cook the other side in the same way. Remove from the pan and transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper to drain.

  8. Serve the chicken patties with the orzo salad and tabbouleh on the side.

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