Chickpea soup (Lablabi)

January 12, 2013  •  Category:

It has been really cold in Lebanon the last few days and this soup which is sold by cart vendors in Bagdad (Iraq) is hearty and simple to prepare. My Iraqi friend Wafa’ gave me her recipe during her annual visit to  Lebanon  this past Summer. She said she loves it most with a squeeze of Seville oranges (called bousfeir here )which are in season now. She told me this soup warms the bones and gives strength.


6 servings

  •           1 1/2 cups of dry chickpeas

•           6 cups of chicken stock (homemade)

            •           1 tsp. salt (to taste)

            •           1 1/2 tsp. of turmeric

            •           1 red chili pepper (optional)

            •           3 lemons or Seville oranges, quartered

            •           1/2 tsp. of baking soda


  1. Soak the dry chickpeas with the baking soda overnight in at least 6 cups of water.

            2. Drain and place the chickpeas in a pot with the chicken stock, turmeric, and chili pepper; bring to a simmer for at least 45 minutes, skimming the froth until the chickpeas are tender. Salt to taste.

            3.         Ladle into individual bowls and serve with quartered lemons or Seville oranges to squeeze into the soup.

NOTE: You can use a bouillon cube with water instead of the homemade chicken bouillon.



14 Comments  •  Comments Feed

  1. AstraLibris says:

    SO cozy and comforting!! I so love chickpeas for comfort food…

  2. Priya says:

    Hearty and super filling soup.Definitely keeps me warm.

  3. Rosa says:

    A beautiful soup! So warming and comforting.

    Those are beautiful mountains. I’d love to visit Lebanon and see its mindblowing countryside.



  4. Nadji says:

    Chez moi, ce plat est parfumé au cumin et il est servi bien chaud avec un filet d’huile de’olive qui change tout.
    Je ne connaissais pas cette version avec les agrumes. A tester très vite.
    A bientôt

  5. Velva says:

    Look at that snow! Any soup that provides strength and warmth are high up on my list.

    Stay warm my friend.


  6. Sue says:

    This soup sounds so cozy yet refreshing—I love the idea of the lemons and oranges, it’s so simple and yet it must have a wonderful flavor.

  7. Belinda @zomppa says:

    Great comfort for the cold. That guy looks super happy!

  8. Thibault says:

    That’s funny, I was in Tunisia not long ago and they have something similar, infused with cumin, and to which they add, bread, eggs, harissa, and a lot of things to make a hearty and delicious breakfast. I had no idea they had something like that in Iraq! thx

  9. domi says:

    Ils sont magnifiques et de plus ils font le…pois et je suis chiche d’y goûter. Bisous et bonne soirée

  10. Hélène (Cannes) says:

    Ces montagnes ressemblent à celles de notre arrière-pays … On y annonce d’ailleurs de la neige pour aujourd’hui ou demain. POur l’instant, il fait très beau. Je croise les doigts ! ;o) Superbe, ta soupe … J’aime l’idée de l’orange, aussi.
    Bisous et bonne année, Joumana

  11. Needful Things says:

    Brr, we are suffering a bit of a cold wave here as well. My bones could use some warmth and strength! This soup looks like the perfect antidote to a cold day.

  12. Susan says:

    I read about the snow there! Crazy weather. Delicious and hearty soup for this season.

  13. Amanda says:

    Thank you for this recipe. My grandmother was from Iraq and would make this as Mezza, and I never knew the name of it and I’ve been craving it for years. I appreciate this.

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