Do we want to try some harira – that’s the classic Ramadan fast-breaker all over Morocco? Or some baisa, which is a local Berber version? Or both, maybe, why not?


We hesitate. It seems bad enough eating at all, never mind greedily wanting to try both. Which we undoubtedly do. But we needn’t have worried: the Mohammeds are positively encouraging us to eat. We need to keep up our strength for our travels, they say. Of course: the wayfarer waiver. Both it is then!


The harira is meaty and thick, a soup your spoon would almost stand up in, flavoursome mutton and chickpeas, plenty of spices and a good half-dozen kinds of vegetable. Seven kinds, actually, says Mohammed the father. – Annie Hawes ‘A handful of honey’

I was alone, they’d gone off for an all-day outing to the planetarium, not my cup of tea at all. I watched a bit of television, but when that prattish James Martin said dee-cee in a French accent, instead of the perfectly acceptable ‘dice’ for chopping potatoes, I got in a huff and went into the kitchen to deal with the leftover lamb from our supper.  Harira seemed just the thing to make for my astronomers when they returned from their travels.

And I hauled out Al Stewart’s ‘Year of the cat’ … Nancy’d given me an earworm, thanks girlfriend … what a perfect day, one day – who knows? This one’s for you:

I got the harira recipe here:


In other news, our widower continues to lurk. I’m thinking we may as well give him a name and get him his own food bowl. Seems he’s settling in for a long stay.



  1. Sounds like a good day. What was on at the Planetarium. I haven’t been for ages. If I’d known maybe I would have gone with them. Nothing stirs the travel imagination more than the idea of what’s out there in the universe 😉

  2. I had a road runner who lost his mate and would perch on top of the house making the most woeful sounds…he finally stopped after a month…hope your friend gets over his loss sooner.

  3. Aah, Year of the Cat. {{Clink}} 🙂

    Hope your astronomer’s enjoyed the Hairira. We’re going to the Planetarium on Wednesday (1) to see what the Night Sky and Star of David looked like over Bethlehem 2000+ years ago; and (2) to learn about the upcoming Lunar Eclipse and Winter Solstice.

  4. Poor little Hadeda. We had a widower swan take up with a widowed Canada Goose. They were completely satisfied with each other’s company. Hope the bereavement doesn’t send you into heart spasms.

  5. Harira looks great, but I have never heard of an earworm before. It reminds me of a tale in a thick book called A Century Of Creepy Stories about an earwig. I hope fervently your earworm has never spoken with my earwig.

  6. Poor birdie. The other birds don’t come around at all while he’s mourning? Interesting.
    I had soup for dinner just now, but it didn’t look half as yummy as your harira, I checked out the recipe site you linked to – hope to try it soon.

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