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Aush, an Afghan noodle soup with chickpeas, spinach, ground meat, and yogurt with a spoon and checked napkin

Aush: Savory Afghan Noodle Soup

This soup has three components: noodley broth, seasoned ground lamb, and yogurt. Don't worry, it's not complicated, or spicy. The ingredients get assembled in individual serving bowls just before you set them on the table. Stir in the yogurt and tuck right in.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Afghan
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6
Author katiemorford

Ingredients

  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 pound ground lamb or beef
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt, plus more to season the broth if needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 7 ounces uncooked spaghetti (doesn't need to be exact)
  • 10 cups chicken broth (low-sodium if store-bought)
  • One 15-ounce can kidney beans, rinsed and strained
  • One 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and strained
  • 1 large bunch swiss chard or kale, stems removed, roughly chopped or a few big handfuls baby spinach
  • 1 pint plain Greek yogurt

Instructions

  1. Sauté the onion in olive oil in a medium skillet on medium-low heat until tender and golden. Add the garlic and sauté another 2 minutes. Add the ground lamb and use a spoon to break it up as it cooks so it is small, loose, and separated (like taco meat). If the cooked lamb produces a lot of oil, drain it off.
  2. Once the meat is browned add the coriander, paprika, salt, pepper, tomato paste, and water. Mix everything well, drop heat to low, and continue to cook for 15 to 20 minutes until it is a deep, reddish brown and infused with flavor.
  3. While the meat is cooking, pour the chicken broth into a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the spaghetti and boil for 5 minutes. Add the beans and chard/kale to the broth and continue to cook until the pasta is done. Taste and add salt to taste, as needed

  4. To assemble, put two ladles of noodles and broth into each serving bowl. Top with 2 spoonfuls of lamb. Finish with 1 or 2 spoonfuls of yogurt.
  5. To eat, give each bowl a stir and enjoy.