Fakes -Greek Lentil Soup

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This is yet another recipe inspired by my memories of the delicious food on the Greek islands.   I made this last night when I was trying to convince myself to go out for a run in the freezing cold after work.  My 5km run is in two and a half weeks but I haven’t yet reached my 5km target.  I thought that knowing there would be a delicious hot bowl of soup waiting for me when I get back might make it a bit easier to get out the door!  It worked and I ended up running for 3.8km, my farthest yet, so I am nearly at my goal!  :-D

This is my own version of the traditional greek soup called Fakes.  It is one of my favourite soups and I make it a lot throughout the winter.  Fakes traditionally includes a lot of olive oil and some vinegar.  Both flavours compliment each other to give both a richness and a tangyness.  This would more traditionally be made with brown lentils, so you can try using brown or green if you’d prefer.   I always use red for this as I just love the red variety, but they do produce a soup with less ‘bite’ compared to one made with the brown variety.  Experiment and see which you prefer!  I also use apple cider vinegar rather than the more traditional red wine vinegar, generally just because I always have apple cider vinegar in my cupboard!   But red wine vinegar is great in it as well.  You can try out using balsamic vinegar instead if you think you might like it, but I feel balsamic vinegar doesn’t compliment the flavour of the soup as it is too strong and heavy.  The lentils make this a very filling, nutritious soup, full of protein, fibre, iron and potassium.  Along with a salad and some nice bread, this could be a meal in itself.

INGREDIENTS

  • 200g lentils, soaked
  • 2 onions, diced
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 400g can chopped tomoatoes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 7 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2-3 tbsp vinegar

Fry the onions and garlic for about five minutes, then add the lentils, tomatoes, bay leaves and oregano.  Pour in 1 litre of boiling water and season with salt and pepper.  Bring the soup to the boil and then simmer over a low heat until the lentils are tender.  This will vary from 25 – 45 minutes depending on which variety of lentils you use.  If necessary, add a little more water to get the consistency which you prefer.  Take the soup off the boil and stir in the olive oil and the vinegar.

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