Friday, August 17, 2012

Comfort in a bowl of soup

Last week several days of unsettling blustery weather and a hectic schedule brought on the sudden urge for a comforting soup.

I had recently read several recipes for Harira, a Moroccan inspired lamb, chickpea and coriander soup.  Starting with a beautiful home raised lamb shoulder I put together this hearty soup.  It proved to be the perfect pot of comfort and tasted delicious served with plenty of fresh coriander, natural yoghurt and warm pita bread.

Moroccan inspired lamb soup

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 small brown onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
500 g lamb shoulder or any pieces of lamb meat, trimmed and cut into chunks
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons paprika
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 litre stock, I used home made vegetable stock
1 x 400 g can of good quality diced tomatoes
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh coriander
1 x 400 g can of chickpeas, drained
1 x 400 g can of lentils, drained
1/2 cup risoni or other small pasta
fresh coriander leaves to serve

Heat the oil in a large heavy based saucepan or stockpot, add the onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes or until softened.  Add the meat and cook over hight heat until the meat is browned.  

Add the spices, bay leaf, tomato paste, canned tomatoes, coriander and stock and stir well.  Bring to the boil.

Reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours or until the meat is tender.

Towards the end add the chickpeas, lentils and risoni and continue to simmer until pasta is tender.  Continue to stir occasionally.  Season to taste.

Serve with extra coriander leaves, natural yoghurt and warm or toasted pita bread.

*Chickpeas, lentils and pasta may be too many 'bits' for some people but it worked for me.  Omit any of these for a smoother soup.

Do you have a favourite comforting soup?
Do you feel unsettled when the weather is grey and windy?  


  1. I love making soup - it's so easy. I'm really loving a carrot and lentil soup that I've found on 84th & 3rd's food blog (so simple to make) and also a Potato & Cauliflower Soup from CityHippyChic's blog.

  2. your soup looks delicious jane..i am going to miss winter and steaming bowls of soup..x

  3. That looks lovely. I also love making soup. My favourite is Margaret Fulton's mushroom soup - it is delicious!
    Sarah xx

  4. Delicious.
    The weather here is fairly unsettled, it's forecast to snow tonight- the heaviest snow fall in 14 years.

  5. Jane, your harrira looks amazing - perfect for breaking a fast!

    I've never made lamb soup before, but we make a similar version with ham bones that our friend Johnny gives us. It's a house staple and my boys have thrived on it - often I can get seven serves of veg into them in one meal. Having said that, Big Boy's girlfriend, who didn't grow up on thick hearty soups, refers to it as "gruel". :D

  6. That looks sublime, nearly enough to break my nightshade allergy rule and just eat it! mmm.. how can I make that without tomatoes or paprika.... Our faves at the moment are cream of broccoli (of which my 3 smalls just love) and we also love pumpkin soup made with ginger. xx

  7. Pumpkin soup is my favorite! I have been experimenting with a moroccan twist to it this winter! Delicious...

  8. this sounds so delicious, may have to give it ago :)

  9. My favourite soup is chicken and vegetables with lots of pearl barley. Soup to me means wintery nights with bed socks and a good book

  10. This looks delicious!
    I have a freezer full of home grown lamb - I'll be giving this recipe a go. Thanks Jane!

    P.S. I have a quick Bacon, Potato and Leek soup that is high on rotation during the winter months. Even the kids can't get enough!

  11. Hello, just found you....
    love the definitely going to follow you....and you're definitely on my blog list...I'm off to make some breakfast bread...
    Take care


Hello and welcome. I will try to reply to all comments eventually because I love the conversation! Jane