Thick, lemony, and bristling with green herbs and mint, this Algerian wheat soup (related to the similarly pronounced Moroccan Harira) traditionally breaks the fast during the month of Ramadan–and is a vegetarian delight year round. Serve hot to 4 as a rich first course.

* 2 Tablespoons olive oil
* 1 onion, chopped
* 4 cloves garlic, chopped
* 1 teaspoon paprika
* pinch cayenne pepper
* 1/4 cup tomato puree
* 4 cups vegetable stock
* salt to taste
* 1/4 cup bulgur (cracked wheat)
* 1/2 cup chopped parsley
* 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
* 1/2 cup chopped mint
* 1/2 cup canned chickpeas
* 1-2 Tablespoons lemon juice

Heat oil in a large saucepan. Sauté onion until tender, about 5 minutes, then stir in garlic, paprika, and cayenne. Cook, stirring, for a minute or two, then stir in the tomato puree and stock. Bring to a simmer, then stir in salt and bulgur. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the bulgur is tender.

Puree the soup, solids first, then add parsley, cilantro, and mint, and puree until the soup is almost smooth. Return the soup to the pan. Stir in the chickpeas and let heat through. Ladle into bowls and spoon in the lemon juice and salt to taste.