It's easy to understand why harira is the traditional soup to break Ramadan; it's everything you need in one bowl to satisfy your hunger, especially when it's topped with a thick saffron yoghurt. Begin this recipe a day ahead to soak the chickpeas and drain the yoghurt.
- 60 ml (¼ cup) olive oil or clarified butter
- 250 gm boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 3cm cubes
- 3 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 600gm), cut into 3cm cubes
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 long green chilli, finely chopped
- ½ cup each (firmly packed) coriander and flat-leaf parsley
- 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 2 vine-ripened tomatoes, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp each ground black pepper, cinnamon, ginger and paprika
- ½ tsp ground allspice
- 1 litre (4 cups) chicken stock
- 400 gm canned chopped tomatoes
- 100 gm (½ cup) dried chickpeas, soaked in cold water overnight, drained
- 80 gm dried small green lentils
- 60 gm spaghettini, broken into 3cm pieces
- 60 ml (¼ cup) lemon juice
- To serve: coriander and mint (optional)
- 500 gm Greek-style yoghurt
- 1 garlic clove, finely grated
- ½ tsp saffron threads
- 1For saffron yoghurt, combine ingredients in a bowl, season to taste, transfer to a sieve lined with muslin, place over a bowl and refrigerate overnight until thick (discard liquid).
- 2Heat 40ml oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add lamb and chicken and brown all over (5-7 minutes). Set aside.
- 3Blend onion, garlic, chilli and herbs in a small food processor to a paste. Heat remaining oil in a saucepan over medium heat, add onion paste and sauté until fragrant (2-3 minutes). Add celery and tomatoes, stir to combine, then add tomato paste and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly darker in colour (1-2 minutes). Add spices, stir until fragrant (30 seconds to 1 minute), then add stock, canned tomatoes, lamb and chicken, reduce heat to low, then cover and cook until meat starts to become tender (60-80 minutes).
- 4Meanwhile, cover chickpeas with plenty of cold water in a saucepan over medium heat and simmer until tender (40-45 minutes), then drain.
- 5Add lentils and chickpeas to soup and simmer until lentils are cooked through (50 minutes to 1 hour). Add spaghettini, simmer until tender (7-8 minutes), then add lemon juice, stir to combine and serve hot topped with coriander and mint, and saffron yoghurt.
Drink Suggestion: Rich, full-bodied white viognier. Drink suggestion by Max Allen.