What is better than a warm fire and a big bowl of comfort food on a winters night?
Pulses and lentils are a staple of the traditional Mediterranean diet. Fasolada is a soup made of dried white beans, olive oil and vegetables. If you have not tried them they are so easy to use, economical and delicious when used the right way.
This authentic soup is super delicious and is the quintessential hearty and comforting dish shared amongst greeks during winter. So much so, that it has nourished generations of families.
Simply soak your dried beans overnight, or soak during the morning, strain and make the soup in the afternoon. If you are using a pressure cooker, this will be ready in 20 minutes not including the soaking time. If you are using a typical method it will be approximately 1 hour cooking time.
Pressure Cooker Cooking Time 20 mins
Standard Cooking Time on High – Medium 50 mins
Prep Time ( not including soaking of beans) 10 minutes
1 red/white onion finely chopped
1 carrot finely chopped
1 celery stick finely chopped
2 tbspns fresh not dried parsley
1/2 tspn tumeric powder ( optional )
40ml olive oil
400g dried white beans soaked overnight. ( not tinned )
1 cup hot vegetable stock
5-7 cups hot water
20ml lemon juice
1/2 tspn chilli flakes (optional )
Note: The non-traditional items are optional.
Use the dried beans instead of the tinned variety for the added health benefits of this dish.
Soak the beans overnight or for a few hours in water. Ensure you have extra water as they will double in size. Strain the beans.
In a saucepan or ideally pressure cooker, brown all the vegetables except the parsley.
Add the strained beans that have been soaking overnight. Stir through on high heat for 2 minutes.
Add the stock, tumeric powder, and five cups of the water and half the parsley.
The tumeric powder is optional. It does not alter the taste, it simply adds a golden colour and tumeric has health benefits when included in our diet.
Pressure cooker method
Allow to boil and seal the lid of the pressure cooker. Cook on medium for 20 mins. After 15 minutes, remove from heat , depressurise the cooker and check if there is enough liquid, and the progress of your beans. Seal with the lid and cook for 5-10 minutes at a time checking in between. If the beans are not cooked but you have run out of liquid, then add 2 cup of water.
Standard cooking method – in your saucespan
If your cooking the beans in a standard saucepan keep the lid on mostly (not totally closed ) and cook on medium for 40 minutes adding one cup of water if your liquid is being absorbed by the beans. Decrease the heat for the last 10 minutes of cooking – when your beans are firm but not hard. Also, keep tabs on it as the liquid will have reduced. Add liquid, but not too much at the end, as the soup will be runny otherwise. You want it to be almost creamy.
Your soup is ready when the beans are soft, slightly firm and some are falling apartAdd the remainder of the parsley. Season.
Cook for a further 5 minutes and serve with bread.
Sprinkle a little cracked pepper, and a dash of lemon and chilli flakes. Only a little, the soup is not meant to be spicy.
Scroll down, for a list of stews and soups available on olivesandfeta.