Harira - The Real Thing!
From Come With Me to the Kasbah by Kitty Morse. Serves 6-8

2 medium onions, sliced
2 lbs. lamb shanks or stew (I cut the meat in ½ inch pieces and wrap the bones in cheesecloth
2 tbsp olive oil
1 28 oz whole tomatoes
¼ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp turmeric
¼ tsp saffron threads, crushed
1/3 cup fresh cilantro
6 cups water
1 cup green or brown lentils
1 16 oz can chick peas
½ cup whole wheat vermicelli (or other thin noodle)
1 egg, lightly beaten
Salt and pepper to taste
Juice of ½ lemon + lemon wedges for garnish

In a large stock pot brown the onions and the meat in the olive oil (save the bones for later). In a blender combine the tomatoes, spices, and herbs and blend until smooth. Add mixture to meat. Bring to a boil. Add the water and lentils, reduce heat, add bones tied in cheesecloth if using, and cover tightly. Simmer the soup for 2 hours or until meat is tender. Remove the cheesecloth and discard bones. About ½ hour before serving, add the undrained chick peas and heat through. Add the lightly beaten egg, and stir until it makes strands. Add vermicelli and cook until tender. Add lemon juice and serve garnished with lemon wedges.

Yemenite Chicken Soup

  from Faye Levy’s International Jewish Cookbook
(Serves 8)

2 tbsp ground cumin
2 tsp turmeric
¼ tsp ground black pepper
2 ½ to 3 lbs organic chicken pieces
Salt to taste
1 large onion
2 ripe, medium organic tomatoes, or 4 plum tomatoes
About 2 quarts boiling water
4 to 6 smallish boiling potatoes (Organic Yukon Gold are a good choice)

Combine cumin, turmeric and pepper. Place chicken in a large heavy pot and heat over low heat. Sprinkle with salt and spice mixture and cook over low heat about 7 minutes, turning pieces occasionally so they are well coated with spices.

Cut a deep X in the onion and in each tomato and add whole to the pot. Add boiling water to cover, pouring it in alongside the chicken so spices are not washed off. Add potatoes and push them into the liquid, adding more water if necessary so they are covered. Bring to a boil, then skim foam from surface. Cover and cook over low heat 2 hours or until soup is well flavored. Adjust seasoning.

Moroccan Lentil Soup

6 servings

2 onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
6 cups water
1 cup red lentils
1 (15 oz) can chick peas, drained
1 (19 oz) can cannelloni beans, drained
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
½ cup diced carrots
½ cup chopped celery
1 tsp garam masala
1 ½ tsp ground cardamom
½ tsp ground cayenne
½ tsp ground cumin
2 tbsp salt or to taste
1 tbsp olive oil
½ bunch kale or collards or other green torn into bite size pieces (optional)

1. In large pot sauté the onions, garlic and ginger in olive oil for 5 minutes.
2. Add the water, lentils, chick peas, cannelloni beans, diced tomatoes, carrots, celery, spices. Bring to a boil for a few minutes then simmer for 1 to 1 ½ hours or longer, until the lentils are soft.
3. Puree half the soup in a food processor or blender (I use a stick blender right in the pot). Return the pureed soup to the pot. If using greens, add them to the soup and cook until bright green or to desired doneness.

French Lentil Soup
6 servings
• 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• 2 cups chopped onions
• 1 cup chopped celery
• 1 cup chopped carrots
• 2 garlic cloves, chopped
• 4 cups (or more) vegetable broth
• 1 1/4 cups lentils, rinsed, drained
• 1 14 1/2–ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
• Balsamic vinegar (optional)

Heat oil in heavy large saucepan over medium–high heat. Add onions, celery, carrots, and garlic; sauté until vegetables begin to brown, about 15 minutes. Add 4 cups broth, lentils, and tomatoes with juice and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium–low, cover, and simmer until lentils are tender, about 35 minutes.

Transfer 2 cups soup (mostly solids) to blender and puree until smooth. Return puree to soup in pan; thin soup with more broth by 1/4 cupfuls, if too thick. Season with salt, pepper, and a splash of vinegar, if desired. Ladle soup into bowls.

Creamy Carrot Bisque (macrobiotic)
Creamy Carrot Bisque (Adapted from Cooking the Whole Foods Way by Christina Pirello) Serves 8

2 tsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 shallots, peeled and diced
Sea salt
8 cups diced carrots
6 cups organic vegetable or chicken broth
2 cups filtered water
4 tbsp white miso (optional)

Heat olive oil in a soup pot over med-low heat. Add garlic and shallots with a pinch of salt and cook, stirring 3 to 4 minutes. Add carrots, another pinch of salt and cook, stirring until coated with oil. Add broth and water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat, cover and simmer over low heat until carrots are tender (20 to 25 minutes). Put soup through a food mill or puree in a food processor or use a stick blender until smooth. Return soup to the pot. Add salt to taste. If using miso, remove a small amount of broth, add miso and stir until dissolved. Stir mixture into soup and simmer 3 to 4 minutes more.

Avgolemono - Greek Lemon Soup

This is one of my favorites!

6 cups chicken stock, preferably organic homemade
1/2 cup orzo pasta, or rice
3 egg yolks
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Bring stock to a boil and add orzo or rice. Simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Season stock to taste with salt, if necessary.
2. When the orzo or rice is finished, whisk 2 cups hot soup into the egg/juice mixture, then add the mixture back into the pot, whisking to incorporate. Be careful not to bring to a boil when reheating. Season with freshly ground pepper. Serve hot or cold.

Classic Minestrone

Makes 6-8 main-course servings

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
3 medium carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks (with leaves), chopped
5 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 medium zucchini, chopped
1/4 head Savoy cabbage (about 9 ounces), cored and shredded
7 drained whole, peeled, canned tomatoes, roughly chopped
9 cups vegetable broth
1/3 cup tubetti or other small pasta, such as orzo, or broken spaghetti
1 can cannellini beans (about 16 ounces), with liquid
2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
3 tablespoon minced fresh marjoram
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus more (optional)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat and add the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic. Lower the heat to medium and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are somewhat soft, about 15 minutes. Add the zucchini and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Add the cabbage and cook, uncovered, stirring, until wilted, about 3 minutes more.
Stir in the tomatoes and broth and bring to a boil. Stir in the pasta, lower to a simmer, and cook until the pasta is tender, about 10 minutes.

In a small bowl, mash half of the beans with a fork. Add the mashed and whole beans to the soup and cook, stirring, about 3 minutes.

Remove the soup from the heat and stir in the herbs and cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide among warm soup bowls and sprinkle with Parmesan. Serve immediately with more cheese for passing at the table.

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