Lamb soup

Lamb soup

Winter is not over yet, at least not here in England, and to enjoy a warm soup for dinner is still a pleasure. This is a Moroccan soup, with lamb, chickpeas, potatoes and lentils. The Riverford Farm Cook Book describes it as “a version of harira, a traditional North African soup with warm and fragrant spices such as cinnamon and coriander”. We prepared it once for dinner with some friends and it was a great success. Even one of our friends, which is not a real fan of vegetables and of exotic food loved it.

As most soups it can be prepared in advance and then conserved in the fridge and enjoyed the following day. Since the ingredients do not need to be soaked overnight, this soup does not require a long preparation. You just need some lamb, black or red lentils and a can of chickpeas. If you do not like the vegetables we used, you can add or substitute whatever you want such as celery or turnips. If you like to try different flavours, as we do, this soup is highly recommended.



1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 onion
3 carrots
1 leek
4 potatoes
3 garlic cloves
300 g diced lamb
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground coriander
200 g black lentils
400 g can of tomatoes
1 litre chicken stock
425 g can of chick peas
black pepper
parsley to serve

Wash and chop the onions, carrots, potatoes, leek and garlic cloves. Heat the butter and olive oil in a large pan, add the onions, leek and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes. Then add the carrots and potatoes and cook for another 5 minutes. Add the spices and the chopped lamb and cook slowly for about 20 minutes, until the meat is lightly browned.

Add the lentils, the canned tomatoes (although we felt the tomatoes could be eliminated) and simmer for 5 minutes over a low heat. Add the chicken stock, bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and cook for 45 minutes, or until the lentils are soft and the meat is tender. Stir in the drained chickpeas and cook for another 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with parsley (or coriander if you prefer) and serve.

Buon appetito.

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