Friday, May 31, 2013

Moroccan Harira

Thanks to having a food-allergy friendly menu, Busboys & Poets is a favorite DC area haunt of the Mister and I.  Which as an aside, if you have to avoid gluten, you need to run not walk to the closest Busboys and get their GF hazelnut chocolate cake, it's like Nutella in cake form.  Just sayin'.  Any way, back to the topic at hand.  Busboys serves an amazing vegan version of a traditional Moroccan stew called harira.  It's essentially a spiced chickpea and lentil stew, and unlike many stews, this one is actually quite healthy.  So after the Mister went bonkers for the harira at Busboys, I made it my personal mission to recreate it.  This is another all-purpose Crop Share veggie recipe, but it will make a great vehicle for the bundle of parsley you'll all be receiving.  And while this stew has it's fair share of heat to it, you can easily cut back on the cayenne and then serving each bowl with a dollop of sour cream or plain Greek yogurt will help cut any additional heat.  They say you need to fight fire with fire, so perhaps this is just what this weekend's hot forecast calls for.

Moroccan Harira

3 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 celery stalks, diced
4 carrots, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp ground ginger
2 Tbsp turmeric
2 Tbsp cumin
1/4 tsp cayenne
3 Tbsp tomato paste
2 cups stewed tomatoes (not Italian style), drained
5 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1 bay leaf
2 Tbsp Kosher salt
Ground black pepper
2 cups chickpeas, drained
1 cup brown lentils
1/2 lemon, juiced
Bundle of parsley, chopped
Sour cream (dairy-free or regular) or plain Greek yogurt to garnish

In a large stock pot or dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium high heat.  Add onion, carrot, celery and garlic and saute until tender, about 4-5 minutes.  Reduce heat slightly and add all of your spices, being careful not to allow any of them to burn on the bottom of the pot.  Add tomato paste and stir until well blended.  Add stewed tomatoes and stock, taking care to get any bits off the bottom that have started to stick.  Stir until blended and creamy.  Add bay leaf, salt and pepper.

Stir in chickpeas, cover pot, reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes.  Stir in lentils, cover and simmer for an additional 30 minutes.  Check part way through lentil cook time, and add more stock if needed.

Add lemon juice and chopped parsley, and adjust seasoning to taste.

Serve each bowl with a dollop of sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, and garnish with an additional pinch of fresh, chopped parsley.

Adapted from v:gourmet (

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