Moroccan Chicken and Chickpea Harira (Inspired by Claudia Roden from Arabesque)

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Recipe Image

Lynley Ruck


  • 500 g chicken thighs
  • 1 large onion, chopped coarsely
  • 250 g chickpeas, soaked overnight
  • 200g green lentils, rinsed
  • 300 g ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • salt
  • 4 tablespoons plain flour
  • 100 g vermicelli or orzo (optional)
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • large bunch coriander, chopped
  • large bunch of flat-leaf parsley, chopped


Put the chicken thighs, the onions and drained chickpeas into a large pot. Cover with about 3 litres of water* and bring to the boil. Remove the scum, add the tomatoes and some pepper and simmer, covered, for 1 hour or until the chickpeas are tender. Lift out the chicken, remove bones and cut meat into pieces. Set aside
Add the drained lentils, ginger, cinnamon and cook for 20 minutes or until the lentils are tender, adding more water if required, then add salt to taste.
Return the chicken to the pot and add more water, add the vermicelli or orzo and simmer until cooked. Thicken with 4 tbsp of flour mixed to a paste with 4 tbsp of cold water, stirring vigorously until incorporated, cook for 5 minutes more then add the lemon juice, chopped coriander and parsley to serve.

*Remember to use less water if using tinned chickpeas

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