I have to admit that dinner tonight wasn’t intentionally meatless because we just planned to have the leftover soup from a cooking spree. It also isn’t 100% meatless because it had chicken stock in it. So, it was almost meatless, and it could have been if I had used vegetable stock in the soup when making it.
The latest Cooks Illustrated arrived with a almost vegetarian version of harira, a traditional dried legume and pasta soup with a boatload of spices. Many versions of this soup contain lamb, which would probably elevate it to a whole new level.
These are just the dried spices. It also includes fresh ginger and garlic.
Why is all this so significant to me? Because, the soup was made by my husband who decided he wanted to start making soups this winter and picked a very unique one to begin with.
The soup begins with the onions, celery, garlic, ginger, some cilantro and parsley, the spices, the lentils and the chickpeas simmering away in a 50/50 mix of water and chicken stock. Not all that hard except for all the chopping and grating involved. Later, the container of strained tomatoes and the orzo get added with a slow simmer allowing the flavors to develop. Almost at the end, you add the greens. We didn’t have chard so we substituted collards.
The finished product gets fresh parsley and cilantro on top before serving, and a squeeze of lemon.
I admit. This would really rock with roasted lamb cubes in it. But, all by itself it is a hearty filling soup and I’m glad my husband decided he wanted to try it.