An Old Fashioned Lentil Soup Recipe
This Lentil soup recipe goes way back in time. Even thousands of years ago, Greeks used to include a lot of legumes in their diet. In fact, they were a staple to their everyday table. Since they were (and still are) easy to store without spoiling. And the preferred way of eating them was cooked into a soup along with olive oil, garlic, and onions all favored for their health benefits.
This humble and simple Lentil soup served along with a piece of bread and a glass of red wine is what the Ancient Greek diet is all about. Olive oil, wine, and wheat were the Ancient Greeks' holy trinity!
This nutritious soup has an amazing earthy flavor. It's simply cooked along with onions, garlic, olive oil, and bay leaves. When we serve this soup in Greece we always add a few drops of vinegar to it. It adds a nice hint of acidity to it.
We also like to serve it along with olives, salt-cured sardines, or anchovies (another Ancient Greeks favorite).
A Healthy & Nutritious Soup
This Ancient Greek lentil soup is really one of the best and most nutritious foods to include in your weekly meal plan. Lentils are a great source of iron and dietary fiber. They're also a budget-friendly meal to feed a whole family. And if it is a good variety of lentils they'll also get cooked quick enough without having to use a pressure cooker.
And like most Greek soups this soup gets nice and thick by simmering and stirring with plenty of olive oil. Real extra virgin olive oil can thicken a soup. That is if it's not of a bad quality that's mixed with water or other oils. Check my post about olive oil to see how to check if your olive oil is real.
Greek Lentil Soup Recipe
- 1 + ½ cup of medium sized brown lentils
- 1 small onion minced
- 3 large garlic cloves chopped
- 1 large dried bay leaf
- 40 ml olive oil extra virgin
- red wine vinegar to serve with
- In a medium sized cooking pot add about 1 liter of hot water and bring to a boil. Add the lentils and let them boil for 5 minutes.
- Using the cooking pot lid, leave about 1 inch of space to drain the water from the pot. You could also use a strainer if you own one that has very tiny holes (as we don't want the lentils to fall out).
- Refill the cooking pot with water (about 3 fingers higher than the lentils) bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium and add the minced onion, the chopped garlic cloves, and the dried bay leaf.
- Season with salt and pepper and simmer for about 45 minutes to 1 hour. (The time really depends on the variety of the lentils). Taste a few to check if they are ready.
- Once the lentils are cooked and the water reduced by ⅔, add the olive oil. At this point you have to stir constantly, because the oil will start to thicken the soup.
- Keep stirring for about 10 minutes. By now you should have a nice pretty thick soup.
- Serve with a few drops of red vinegar in each portion.
- Terra Creta | Single Origin | 100% Pure Greek Traceable Olive Oil | Cold Extracted | World's Finest Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2017 GOLD Medal Winner PJ KABOS 16.9Floz Greek Extra Virgin Olive Oil | 100% FRESH olive oil born in Ancient Olympia vicinity | Greece | KORONEIKI Variety
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Teri Lewis says
I made these lentils for my class when we did ancient civilizations. I was surprised how good they were! I was a little skeptical with so few ingredients, but they were delicious.
[email protected] says
Glad you enjoyed them. I guess this recipe wouldn't have survived so many years if they weren't good after all 😛
Alina Delicious Romania says
Will try this next week! I'll send you a pic on Facebook 🙂 Even so, I'm sure that your delicious Greek olive oil makes the soup even more yummy! I would love to have some right now...
[email protected] says
Looking forward on seeing the results!