Thursday, 21 February 2019

Ash Reshteh (Persian Vegetable and Noodle Soup)

This hearty vegetarian soup is easy to make with a little planning. There are several versions online and this recipe contains personal tweaks. It is the type of recipe that tolerates "tweaks" very well. You can use alternate legumes, including canned ones if you are in a hurry. 

Soak 1-1/2 cups of dried beans in water for 8-12 hours. I used 1/2 cup each of garbanzos, navy beans and small red beans. Black beans, small fava beans, and green or brown lentils would also work well but I would cook the lentils separately.

Rinse the beans and cook in fresh salted water until they are tender. I used the Instant Pot (manual setting x 12 minutes with natural release).  This makes about 4 cups of cooked beans if you prefer to used canned beans.

In the meantime...

Use a large soup pot.
  • Dice 2 onions, 3 cloves of garlic and soften in a tablespoon of olive oil on medium heat
  • Add 8 cups of vegetable broth. I used Better than Bouillon paste and water.
  • Add 1 generous cup each of chopped parsley, chopped dill, chopped cilantro and fresh spinach or baby kale to the broth. Bring to a boil and simmer until greens are wilted
  • Add 200- 225 g of pasta like bucatini or linguine
  • Add the cooked beans.
Simmer for 15 minutes until pasta is cooked.

Add 1 teaspoon of turmeric, 1 teaspoon of cumin, salt and pepper to taste

If you have some preserved lemons, finely dice the peel of 1/2 a lemon and add it to the soup. You could squeeze some fresh lemon juice in the soup instead. 

Add a dollop of sour cream or Greek yogurt to serve. 

Serves 6-8

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