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Chorba

Serves 4

1/3 cup olive oil
14 ounces lamb shoulder or neck, cut into bite-size pieces
4 medium onions, finely chopped
4 celery stalks, trimmed and very thinly sliced
1 bunch fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon coarse salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 can (14 ounces) peeled tomatoes with their juices
5 tablespoons tomato paste
2 1/2 quarts hot water
1/2 cup bulgur wheat
1 bunch fresh mint, tied with kitchen string
1. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Brown the meat on all sides. Add the onion and celery and stir well. Reduce the heat slightly. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes or until the onions are softened.

2. Chop half the cilantro (including the stems) and add it to the pan. Stir in the cinnamon, salt, and pepper. Add the tomatoes and bring to a boil. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and 2 cups of the hot water. Cover and cook for 10 minutes.

3. Add the remaining 2 quarts water and bring to a boil. Stir in the bulgur, then the mint. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer about 30 minutes or until the bulgur is tender.

4. Just before serving, chop the remaining cilantro leaves. Remove the mint from the pan and stir in the cilantro. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if you like.

Adapted from ''Cooking at Homeon Rue Tatin"

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