Vegan * Kosher-Friendly * Halal-Friendly
Accompanies: Pita bread (whole wheat, if possible), Salad
Preparation Time: Approximately one hour
Serving Size: One cup
Number of Servings: Approximately 10
Ingredients and Equipment
Lentils 2 cups / 1 lb. / 450 grams
Fresh Green Beans 1/4 lb. / 120 grams
Garlic 6-10 fresh cloves
Yellow Onion 1 large or 2 small
Carrots 1 large or 2 small
Potatoes 1 large, 2 medium, or 4 small
Water 10 cups
Toasted Sesame Oil 1/4 cup
Red Wine Vinegar or Balsamic Vinegar 1/4 cup
Salt 2 tsp.
Pepper 1/4 tsp.
Celery Seed 1 tsp.
1 large pot
1 large spoon to stir the soup
1 colander, to wash dry lentils
1 kitchen knife, to chop vegetables
- Wash lentils in cold running water in a colander and sort, removing any damaged grains and stones.
- Put water, lentils, salt, and oil in a large pot, heat to boiling, and then turn down to a simmer and cover.
- Chop garlic gloves and onion coarsely and add.
- Wash carrot(s) and potato(es), chop into 1/4 inch (1/2 cm) pieces and add.
- Wash green beans, chop into 1″ (2 cm) lengths, and add after the soup has been cooking for approximately 20 minutes.
- After you add the beans, add the celery seed and pepper, and cook for an additional 25 to 30 minutes.
- Remove from heat, and stir in vinegar, or serve with vinegar on the side for people to add to taste.
- ·Substitute olive oil for sesame oil on wine and oil days (for Orthodox Christians), or if you prefer a more Greek flavor.
- ·Chop a red bell pepper into 1/2″ (1 cm) pieces and add 8-10 minutes before cooking is finished.
- ·Provide lemon or lime wedges instead of vinegar.
- ·Diabetics may omit potatoes and carrots, and substitute 3-4 sunchokes (Jerusalem artichokes). If you do this, chop the sunchokes into 1/8″ or 1/4 cm pieces and add only 8-10 minutes before cooking is finished.
This is a popular dish with people of all ages and tastes. The large quantity of fresh garlic added right at the start of cooking adds a salty sweet flavor to the soup — garlic’s sharp flavor when fresh dissipates when cooked for this length of time. Since many people who have trouble tolerating other kinds of beans or legumes digest lentils well, and since it is easy to make in large quantities and freeze for later use, it is a good choice for large gatherings.
Since this is a thick soup, with a good bread (preferably whole wheat pita) and salad it can provide a complete meal. It is also a good start to a meal with a relatively light entree, one based on chicken or fish, and is an excellent soup to make for winter days or when family members have been out fishing, boating, or engaged in other activities that leave them cold and wet.
Working people and singles living alone may want to cook a pot of this on the weekend and freeze in individual plastic containers for lunches during the week.