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Soups

Beluga lentil soup with tomato-pepper harissa

Beluga lentil soup with tomato-pepper harissa
Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times

This is an ode to harissa. It's replaced my ketchup, my salsa picante, even (gasp) my Louisiana hot sauce. I put it on everything. Well, not exactly everything, but the potent North African chile sauce goes into my bean soups ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour | Serves 8
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup finely diced carrots
  • 1/2 cup finely diced onions
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bouquet garni (leek greens, 2 thyme sprigs, 3 parsley stems, bay leaf, 6 black peppercorns tied up in cheesecloth)
  • 2 cups beluga lentils
  • 6 to 7 cups chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup (or to taste) tomato-pepper harissa
  • 1/2 cup (or to taste) Greek yogurt
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish

Step 1In a large saucepan over low heat, cook the olive oil, carrots, onion and garlic until softened, about 10 minutes.

Step 2Add the bouquet garni, lentils and 6 cups chicken broth. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, cover and simmer on low until the lentils are soft, 35 to 45 minutes. Check the soup periodically, adding additional chicken broth if necessary. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice. Check for seasoning and correct if necessary.

Step 3Ladle the soup into a soup plate or bowl, add a spoonful of harissa, a dollop of Greek yogurt and some cilantro leaves. Serve immediately.

Note: Beluga lentils are available at select stores. French green lentils may be substituted.

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