Moroccan Harira Soup

Moroccan Soup



2 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
1/2 pound chicken breast
1 14.5 ounce cans chick peas, also known as garbanzos
1 14.5 ounce cans diced tomatoes
1 large onion
1/4 cup rice
5 tablespoons lentils
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon Vegetable MagicTM spice
1 tablespoon fresh celery
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro (or 1 tablespoon dried cilantro)
2 tablespoons fresh parsley (or 2 teaspoons parsley flakes)
1 tablespoon flour
2 lemons


colander, if you have one.


Pour chicken broth and water into large cooking pot. Add shredded chicken. Simmer for about 20 minutes. Use this time to shred chicken in food processor.

(Food processors are truly wonderful labor-saving devices for that special chef in your family. So give one as a gift. Also give a box of chocolates or a case of beer, lest the chef interpret the food processor as another step into kitchen drudgery. Remember, an enraged chef has access to sharp knives.)

Use colander to drain chick peas.(If you are like most people and do not have such a utensil, carefully pour the water out of the can of chick peas. Ask for a colander for Valentine’s day.)

While shredded chicken, broth mixture simmers, dice onions, cilantro, and celery. Add chick peas, diced onions, tomatoes, rice, lentils, cinnamon, cumin, paprika, pepper, turmeric, and vegetable spice.

Stir frequently while bringing soup to boil. Simmer for an hour, stirring occasionally. If soup is too thick for your liking, add water until you obtain your desired consistency.

Add celery, parsley, and flour to soup, Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

While soup simmers, cut lemons into halves. Serve soup with lemon halves on side of bowl. Add squirts of lemon to taste.


1) Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, and Dorothy Lamour starred in the 1947 movie, Road To Morocco.

2) My mother had lunch with Mrs. Hope.

3) Mom rarely served garbanzo beans for dinner.

4) When I was small my family went on vacation with another family. Their names are lost in the sands of history. A diner served our two families lots of garbanzo beans.

5) To keep us kids happy, the adults promised us a penny for every garbanzo bean we ate. I managed to earn the princely sum of seven cents.

6) However, a kid in the other family ate about 100. I highly suspect he became an industrial giant.

7) I had this dish at the Moroccan restaurant in Disney’s Epcot Center in Orlando. It cost about $15.

8) So now you know what you can charge whenever you get to be as famous as Disney.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on

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