Greek Vegetable and Lentil Soup (Fakes)🥕🇬🇷


Presenting you with Greek lentil soup or fakes (pronounced FA-KESS ), from the Fresh Connection family kitchen.

It shouldn’t be a surprise to read that our fakes recipe is jam packed with vegetables, including carrot, celery, tomato, and cauliflower. We always use the cauliflower stem too. Just trim the outer thick skin.  It's the best part! Sometimes we add spinach and chilli as well 🌶

It's a one pot wonder full of goodness and deliciousness 😋 Make sure you read my tips at the bottom of this page.

Ingredients

  • 250g brown or green lentils, rinsed well
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 cups water
  • 1-2 carrots, small dices
  • 3 stalks celery, small dices
  • 1 large onion or leek, chopped 
  • 1/2 cauliflower including stem, cut flower into small floretes and trim and chop the stem
  • 4-5 peeled crushed tomatoes or a 400 g can good quality passata
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 4-5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp salt (or more to taste)
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • handful chopped parsley
  • red wine vinegar
  • chilli (optional)

Method

  1. Sort and rinse lentils to remove any stones, debris and damaged lentils
  2. Add lentils to a large saucepan and cover well with water. Bring water and lentils to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 mins. Drain the lentils and discard the water they were boiled in. Rinse lentils with cold water.
  3. Wash and dry your saucepan. Heat some extra virgin olive oil in your saucepan and add carrots, onion, garlic, cauliflower and celery. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring the whole time.
  4. Next, stir in the tomato, paste, water, bay leaves, olive oil, salt, pepper and cook for 5 minutes
  5. Add the lentils and bring to the boil. Lower heat and simmer on low to medium for about 35 minutes, or until the lentils are soft to eat but not mushy. This may vary so you may have to cook them a little more or less. Season more with salt and pepper if required. 
  6. Stir through the chopped parsley and drizzle with some more extra virgin olive oil. 
  7. When you serve the soup up, drizzle each plate with red wine vinegar. Add a dollop of natural Greek yoghurt or a piece or feta. Always eat with some yummy bread.
  8. This soup is best enjoyed after at least 3-4 hours, or stored in the fridge overnight for even deeper flavours. 

Tips and Tricks 

  • Step 2 above is very important because it makes the soup gentler on the stomach for those people who are sensitive to lentils. Theory has it that the oligosaccharides in lentils that cause bloating, are removed in this process. I am pretty sure it works because I had it for 3 meals in a row recently with no side affects 😉!!!!
  • In addition to step 2, you can also soak the lentils overnight or at least for a couple of hours before hand, then discard the water and wash the lentils well with cold water. A great option if you have time up your sleeve, but be aware that this may shorten the total cooking time. My husband is highly sensitive to lentils and can only tolerate them if they have been soaked and boiled as mentioned in the last two tips. 
  • You can also substitute onion with leek, and omit the garlic if you are sensitive to either
  • To peel tomatoes, sit them in some boiling water for 5-10 mins. Run over cold water so that they are easier to handle and peel the skin off. 

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