This week, let’s go back to the basics of traditional Moroccan cuisine with a Harira soup recipe. Harira is the national soup in Morocco. And it is a must in Ramadan – the month where muslims around the world fast during daylight. In fact, during that month, every Moroccan household or restaurant has that special smell of fresh herbs. Harira is usually served with dates, dried figs or even small honey pastries.
The harira basic ingredients are always the same: tomatoes, legumes, meat, etc. But every family has its own recipe and there is a wide variety of recipes according to regions. Some criticize Harira for being too hearty or even non-healthy. I think it’s perfectly possible to prepare it in a light and digest way. It really depends on the number of ingredients and the quantity of flour used to thicken the soup. The recipe below is vegan. The taste is great and the protein intake is maintened. The lentils and the chickpeas keep the soup nourishing and comforting, which is its primary function since it is traditionally served to break the fast.
Harira is always made in two steps. First, we prepare a stock with all the ingredients slowly stewed together. Then, we thicken the soup with some flour. I heard it is also possible to thicken it with a grounded boiled potato.
Harira – Moroccan Lentil & Chickpea Soup
Step 1: the stock
1 onion, grated
2 tomatoes, grounded
150 g / 5 oz chickpeas, soaked overnight and peeled
100 g / 3.5 oz lentils
1 sprig of parsley / coriander
½ celery stick
1 cinnamon stick
A few saffron pistils
3 tbsp canola oil
1 tsp pepper
Step 2: thickening the soup
1 handful of mixed herbs (parsley, coriander) and celery
3 tbsp cornflower / cornstarch
4 tomatoes grounded or 2 tbsp tomato concentrate
Juice of 1 lemon
1/ Finely chop the coriander, parsley and celery leaves. Set aside a handful of these mixed herbs for the second step.
In a large pot, pour all the ingredients. Brown over medium heat for a few minutes. Then cover with 2 liters / 0,5 gal of water and slowly stew for 45 minutes.
2/ Add the tomatoes, or the tomato concentrate diluted in lukewarm water. Let it cook for 10 minutes longer. Combine flour with some lukewarm water. Lower the heat, and pour little by little, stirring to avoid forming lumps. Lastly, add the remaining herbs, celery and the lemon juice.
Hi there! I'm Majda.
Foodie, yogini, life lover!
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