Harissa Chickpea Stew

Dinner, Soups

I’d like you to know something incredibly weird and personal about me.

Whenever I get sad, anxious, elated, nervous…something happens. It’s really strange. Like, I dunno why it does this, but my nose does this weird twitch thing. It’s like Bewitched, except totally not cute and definitely not deliberate. There’s no explanation and it hasn’t done this my whole life just recently actually, in the past few years. All my energy goes to my nose and tells me that it doesn’t like something (or does)!

On Saturday this happened to me. It was a combination of 3/4 parts sad and 1/4 parts anxious (in re: of a project I’m working on). Also, something I learned: coffee totally doesn’t help. It makes it twitch faster. Yes, coffee makes it go faster…by a lot. This is weird. And it’s weirder that I’m sharing this. But really we’re friends by now and you should know that when crazy emotions run through my body, my nose reacts. The end.

To calm my nose (or whatever) I decided to make something comforting…that wasn’t doughnuts…

This stew is pretty perfect. Let’s talk about its strengths:

1. It’s vegan, though it doesn’t have to be. Add chicken. The original recipe does and it looks delicious that way. I recommend cooking up a few chicken thighs before (in the same pot!) you start making the stew.

2. Thirty minutes is all you need to throw this together.

3. It’s cheeeap. I dunno. Probably under $10?

4. Harissa. I put it on everything. Eggs, toast with avocado, chicken, etc. You should too. It’s about $6 for the tube and lasts a good while.

This stew was designed to cure some of that February cold that won’t go away.

For me, I’m using it as a hug as I listen to some sappy music (example 1 and example 2) and muscle through this work.

Let’s make this week count–we can do this!

Harissa Chickpea Stew

Print this recipe!

Olive Oil
2 shallot, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons ground cumin
2 tablespoon Harissa (see note below)
2 tablespoon tomato paste
3 bay leaves
2 cups vegetable broth
1 3/4 water
2 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 yellow red bell pepper, diced
4 lemon wedges
Handful of Italian parsley, chopped
French loaf for serving

1. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat. Add minced shallot and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Place garlic atop of shallots and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Next, add the cumin, harissa (note! if you’re adverse to heat scale it back to 1 tablespoon) and tomato paste; stir until a smooth paste forms, about 1 minute.

2. Add vegetable broth, water and bay leaves. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, occasionally stirring, for about 20 minutes.

3. Transfer chickpeas to pot; bring to a simmer and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Salt to taste. I added about 1 1/2 teaspoons of kosher salt. Throw in red peppers and yellow peppers; simmer for 1 minute. Divide stew into 4 bowls, squeeze lemon on top and sprinkle with Italian parsley. Serve with bread.

Adapted from Bon Appetit, January 2012

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Leave a Reply

  • Reply modernworkinggirl February 20, 2012 at 11:34 am

    If any food can give you a hug it’s definitely stew!

  • Reply Connie February 20, 2012 at 10:18 am

    That stew is absolutely devine. The nose thing was pretty funny too…

  • Reply Villy @ For the love of Feeding February 20, 2012 at 9:10 am

    I hate that my husband hates chickpeas.. But this IS going to be cooked and I’ll enjoy it all by myself! I’ll confess though: I love the chicken thigh idea.. πŸ™‚

  • Reply Liz @ Tip Top Shape February 20, 2012 at 8:39 am

    This looks great! I love chickpea anything!!

  • Reply Bev Weidner February 20, 2012 at 6:50 am

    My entire BODY twitches when I get freaked about something. I’m sure that’s not surprising.

    This soup makes me cry. I want it so BAD.

  • Reply ileana February 20, 2012 at 6:46 am

    Haha, that nose thing is funny. This soup sounds great. I love anything with chickpeas. Thanks!

  • Reply Heather Michelle @ A Sweet Simple Life February 20, 2012 at 5:57 am

    Um! This looks amazing. Perfect for a chilly evening.

  • Reply Sally @ Spontaneous Hausfrau February 20, 2012 at 5:26 am

    I’m loving all over this. It looks so tangy and comforting!

  • Reply Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar February 20, 2012 at 4:44 am

    Yummm! This dish looks so easy and tasty. Love it!

  • Reply Heather (Heather's Dish) February 20, 2012 at 4:38 am

    i’ve never actually cooked with harissa even though i LOVE it…i’m totally drooling!

  • Reply sreebindu February 20, 2012 at 3:24 am

    yummy πŸ™‚ love any version of chick pea’s

  • Reply Emilia February 20, 2012 at 2:29 am

    This looks so good, perfect for cold, dark, February evenings. I’ve been seeing so many recipes that want harissa recently, I’m definitely intrigued. Not to to mention, I just bought some more chickpeas…this recipe seems to be in my meal planning cards πŸ™‚

  • Reply Anna @ the shady pine February 20, 2012 at 2:03 am

    Harissa is such a useful ingredient and perfect with the chickpeas….this stew sounds lovely!

  • Reply Ruby Alexandra February 20, 2012 at 1:17 am

    This looks delicious!! I am feeling terribly uninspired at the moment in the food department. I might try something like this!

  • Reply Maggie @ A Bitchin' Kitchen February 20, 2012 at 1:15 am

    This looks amazing. I buy the harissa that comes in a tub at Whole Foods, and can’t get enough of the stuff! Harissa plus chickpeas in a stew sounds like the best thing ever!

    • Reply Adrianna February 20, 2012 at 1:05 pm

      Oh I need to check that out. I only have it in the small tube. I need a tub. Everyone does. πŸ˜‰

      • Reply diana May 7, 2012 at 4:52 pm

        Oh I know which Harrisa she is speaking off and it is incredible!!!!

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