Golden Lentil Stew
This slightly sweet Moroccan chickpea and lentil stew, known as harira, is brightened by spices and lemon.
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup dried chickpeas, soaked in water overnight
- 8 cups homemade or low-sodium store-bought vegetable stock
- 4 cups water
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro, plus 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped
- 3 teaspoons coarse salt
- 4 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 4 ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1 cup yellow lentils, rinsed
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 5 ounces orzo or vermicelli, broken into pieces
- 1/2 cup chopped, pitted dates
- 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus whole leaves for garnish
- 1 lemon, cut into wedges
Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, and cook 5 minutes. Add chickpeas, stock, and water, and simmer until tender, about 45 minutes.
Mash garlic, finely chopped cilantro, and salt into a paste. Add garlic paste, celery, tomatoes, lentils, tomato paste, lemon juice, and spices to pot. Simmer until lentils are tender, 30 to 40 minutes.
Add pasta and dates, and cook, stirring occasionally, until pasta is al dente, about 10 minutes. Stir in coarsely chopped cilantro and parsley. Garnish with parsley leaves, and serve with lemon wedges.