Chickpea Harissa Soup
When the day calls for soup but your schedule doesn’t, look to an assertive ingredient that doesn’t require hours of simmering to extract flavor. Harissa, a North African chile paste, packs a punch right out of the jar (brands range in heat levels, though, so adjust quantity to taste). Dump in 2 cans of chickpeas: The starchy, seasoned liquid thickens the soup quickly. Besides that, additional vegetables and toppings you want to add are up to you: Soup should bend to your life, not the opposite.
- Serves: 3 persons
- 3tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1large yellow onion, diced (about 1/2 cup)
- 1large carrot, diced (about 1/4 cup)
- Kosher salt
- 6garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1tablespoon ground cumin
- 1to 2 tablespoons harissa, or to taste
- 2(14-ounce) cans chickpeas
- 2tablespoons lemon juice
- Honey, to taste (optional)
- Toppings (optional): More lemon juice, celery, celery leaves, herbs (cilantro, parsley, mint), capers, pitted olives, croutons or bread crumbs, soft-boiled egg
Step 1Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot and a pinch of salt, and sauté, stirring occasionally, until tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cumin and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Stir in the harissa and cook until fragrant, 1 minute.
Step 2Add the chickpeas and their liquid. Fill a can with water, and add that to the pot as well. Season with salt, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the chickpeas are warmed and the flavors have come together, about 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and stir in the lemon juice. Now taste it: Add salt, water (if too thick), honey (if too spicy), and/or harissa (if not spicy enough) to your liking. Serve hot, with whichever toppings you like.