Greek Lentil Soup (Fakes)


Next to Indian cuisine, my favorite dishes come from the Mediterranean region, especially Greece. Such diverse and creative delicacies can only tempt those who enjoy good and nourishing food, not to mention diners who fancy treats that tickle the palate.

One of the most popular Greek staples is lentil soup, known as fakes, which is often eaten during Lent and typically made with brown lentils and vegetables. The possibilities are endless and I was inspired to come up with a not-so-traditional version of my own that I served with buttered basmati rice. The flavor is greatly enhanced if you splash some vinegar over each serving, along with some fresh parsley and extra virgin olive oil.

This is my second contribution to this month's My Legume Love Affair, a popular event focusing on the goodness of beans, started by lovely Susan of The Well Seasoned Cook and hosted this month by Simona.


Greek Lentil Soup (Fakes)Greek Lentil Soup (Fakes)
Recipe by
Cuisine: Greek
Published on January 23, 2011

Simple, flavorful and nourishing — a slightly spicy update on a traditional Greek soup of lentils and vegetables

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Ingredients:
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • 2 green chilies or 1 jalapeƱo, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups brown lentils, rinsed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • handful of curry leaves (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • pinch of cayenne
  • 1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes, canned or fresh
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3 1/2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • fresh cracked black pepper to taste
  • handful of fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish
  • balsamic or red wine vinegar and olive oil to serve
Instructions:
  • Heat the oil in a large saucepan or soup pot over medium heat. When hot, add the onion and stir for 2 to 3 minutes until softened. Add the carrot and chilies or jalapeƱo and continue to stir for another few minutes.

  • Now add the lentils, bay leaves, curry leaves if using, oregano, paprika, cumin, chili powder, cayenne, tomatoes and tomato paste, and pour in the vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until the lentils are tender — about 40 minutes. Add water to achieve your desired consistency if necessary.

  • Season with salt and pepper and serve hot. Garnish with parsley and a splash of balsamic or red wine ovinegar and olive oil.

Makes 6 servings

More lentil recipes you are sure to enjoy from Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen:
Lentil Soup with Prunes and Apricots
Green Lentil Soup with Coconut Milk
Curried Red Lentil Soup
Chickpea and Lentil Salad with Zucchini and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Be sure to visit some of my favorite Greek food bloggers:
Ivy, who has just published a cookbook that you will want to purchase
Peter G, who always presents the most tempting photos and delicious recipes
Peter M who offers up informative facts about Greek cuisine and traditions and fabulous recipes and images

On the top of the reading stack: The Meat Lover's Meatless Cookbook: Vegetarian Recipes Carnivores Will Devour by Kim O'Donnel

Audio Accompaniment: Ben Harper

11 comments:

Peter M said...

Lisa, today is definitely a soup on this cold January afternoon. Glad you made this Greek standard (with your own touches). I'll have to try the chilli powder.

Angela said...

I love the spices in this. It sounds very filling.

nancy@skinnykitchen.com said...

Wow...I love the sound of this soup recipe. So healthy too!

Priya said...

Such a filling,nutritious and delicious soup..

Ivy said...

Lisa thanks a lot for the mention and I hope you will also try fakes moudjentra which is in the cookbook.

bellini valli said...

I have yet to try this Greek staple but it sounds so homey and comforting it must be added to my list.

MapMaster said...

I wish I had a bowl right now ... no, make that two bowls!

Kevin said...

There are some really nice flavours in this soup!

Simona said...

A very nice combination of ingredients and flavors for this soup. I like the notes of color from tomatoes and parsley. Thank you so much for another lovely contribution to MLLA!

Raw_Girl said...

Wow your blog is full of recipes for beans and lentils! They're so underrated in their versatility! Nice job.

eatme_delicious said...

I've never heard of fakes before! Sounds delicious.