Warm the olive oil in a thick-bottomed pan on a medium heat.
Fry the pasta bits in the oil for a minute, stirring, until they look like slightly scorched straws.
Then add the bulgar wheat and stir for another minute or two.
Stir in the cinnamon and the salt, and then pour the water into the pan. Add the bay leaves, and bring to a boil, then turn down to the lowest heat, add a lid, and leave for 15 minutes, until all the water has been absorbed.
Put another thick-bottomed saucepan on a medium heat, add the chorizo pieces and fry until the orange oil runs out. Then add the sherry and let it bubble away. Add the apricots (if using), along with the chickpeas (or beans) and canned tomatoes, and half fill each empty tomato can with water and swill it out into the pan. Put on a high heat to bubble for about five minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with the bulgar wheat and, if there's any to hand, some chopped coriander.
Make ahead note:
The stew can be made up to two days ahead. Transfer to non-metallic bowl to cool, then cover and refrigerate as soon as possible. Reheat gently in large saucepan, stirring occasionally, until piping hot.
The cooled stew can be frozen in airtight container for up to 3 months. Defrost overnight in fridge and reheat as above.
Recipe from Nigella: Kitchen by Nigella Lawson (published by Chatto & Windus).