I made today a perfect soup for a rainy autumn day in Sydney. This is a popular winter soup in Lebanon and a really healthy one. ‘Adas bi Hamoud’ soup, which literally translates as lentils and lemon soup is packed with iron and vitamin C. It is a perfect combination because the vitamin C in the lemon increases our absorption of the iron in both the lentils and the silverbeet / spinach.
Cooking time: around 45 minutes
Preparation time: 15 min
1 cup small brown lentils.
1 large diced brown onion
4-5 silverbeet leaves
2 cloves garlic
salt and black pepper to taste
juice of 1 lemon
Check lentils for any stones and rinse well. Put in pot and cover with water. About 5 cms above lentils. Bring to boil, then let it simmer gently. Dice the onion and pan fry with a generous drizzle of olive oil in a separate pan until brown. It is important to make sure that the onion is golden brown and not lightly coloured, otherwise the soup will not taste as delicious.
Rinse silverbeet and chop, add to pot when lentils are nearly cooked. Add browned onion to pot then make sure you add a bit of water to the pan where you cooked the onions whilst hot and add this juice on top of pot, this is also packed with flavour.
Add salt and pepper to taste and let it all boil for about 10 minutes or so until the lentils are really tender. Add extra water if necessary but be careful not to make it watery. You can always add extra liquid. You want a nice consistency, not too thick. Crush garlic and add to pot with lemon juice. Add lemon juice to taste, so it is not too lemony.Turn the heat off and serve. Alternatively, you can squeeze lemon juice on each plate to taste. Totally up to you. I really like this soup lukewarm, the flavour is much more enhanced when not too hot. Enjoy