Hip Hip Harira: Northwest African Soup-Stew
Harira means “silky” in Arabic, perfectly describing this typical Northwest African dish—a thick, filling soup-stew made with chickpeas, lentils, rice and vegetables, and scented with a bunch of spices that add a distinctly aromatic flavor. It’s an easy one-pot meal that’s comforting and endlessly versatile. You wouldn’t go wrong by adding a handful of shredded, roasted chicken to it, serving it traditionally with hard-boiled eggs, or drizzling tangy yogurt over the top.
- Serves 4–6
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled, diced
- 1 stalk celery, chopped
- 2 large carrots, peeled, diced
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ginger
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
- 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes, juice preserved
- 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained, or 1 cup cooked chickpeas
- ½ cup dried red lentils, rinsed
- ¼ cup long-grain brown rice
- 3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup fresh parsley, chopped
- White yogurt (optional)
- Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onion, celery and carrots, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the turmeric, cinnamon, ginger, cumin and black pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Add the tomatoes with their juices, chickpeas, lentils, rice, stock and salt. Cover the saucepan with a lid, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until soft and thickened, about 50 minutes. Turn the heat off, stir in the parsley, and serve.
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