Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Street Food: Moroccan Harira

Welcome to another installment of ethnic recipes from my Street Food cookbook.

This is a Moroccan Harira. A bean soup. It's also considered Morocco's national soup.

(Does the US have a national soup? Who knew that sort of thing even existed...)

But I do know that hearty soups are perfect for fall weather!

Nothing was incredibly complicated about this soup. Most of the ingredients are things I keep on hand, or they were very easy to find (with one exception--see below).

I messed with the amounts of different ingredients based on what happened to be in my pantry or refrigerator. But that's the beauty of cooking--it still came out tasting great!

Here are the measurements I used:

1 c. chickpeas or lentils, cooked (I used lentils)
3 shallots, chopped
1/2 tsp. saffron strands, soaked (Ok--didn't use this. Where do you find these??)
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp. ginger (I used more like a Tbsp. of minced ginger root)
3 tomatoes, chopped
4 c. chicken stock and/or water
1 Tbsp. tomato paste
2-3 Tbsp. cilantro, chopped
2-3 Tbsp. parsley, chopped
1-2 Tbsp. brown rice flour
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
sea salt & pepper to taste

In a large stock pot combine the cooked chickpeas or lentils, shallots, saffron, turmeric, ginger, tomatoes, tomato paste, stock or water, and half of the parsley & cilantro. The directions then instruct you to add a blob of butter.

A blob.

I rather liked that.

(Granted, they called for margarine, which is a disgusting fake food that should never, ever, under any circumstances be considered healthy.)

But I digress...

Getting back to the soup, bring it to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for about 15 minutes.

Place the flour in a small bowl and add a bit of the cooking liquid. Stir to make a creamy paste. Then return to the soup and mix well.

Add lemon juice and adjust seasonings. Continue to simmer for 5 minutes more, then serve! Garnish with cilantro & parsley.

They also recommended serving the soup with dates or almonds & honey.

I recommend eating it while sitting in the middle of a big pile of fallen leaves on a sunny autumn afternoon.

Anyone been to Morocco? Did I do justice to their national soup? 

1 comment:

  1. Of course the US has a national soup! It's Senate Bean Soup! But then Michigan has its own Bean Soup; and there's Manhattan Clam Chowder and New England Clam Chowder; Chili--Texas style, Cincinnati style; Oyster Stew...


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