The essential ingredient for this refreshing soup is a large quantity of finely chopped molokhia leaves. These are, of course, easily available in Egypt but you will probably have to make do with dried ones from a Middle Eastern food shop. The leaves have glutinous properties (so you could use finely chopped okra as an alternative), giving the soup a pleasing texture that is not dissimilar to Chinese shark’s fin soup.
In a large saucepan, fry the garlic and chillies in butter and then stir in the cayenne pepper and ground coriander. Next add the molokhia leaves, parsley and fresh coriander. Stir in the stock or water, bring to the boil and simmer for about 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then serve.
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