Bean Soup – Fasolada

Bean soup with garlic bread

I have to admit, I have not been following the challenge I’ve set for myself as I’ve not been making anything for the past 11 days from the cookbook. Pfff.. But today, I have whipped out something simple from the cookbook, i.e. bean soup.

A healthier option to start off the year, this bean soup is simple and easy to make. Make this soup on a Sunday and keep it in a few containers in the fridge. That’s dinner sorted for the rest of the week.

According to Vefa, the Greeks consider bean soup to be their national dish, not moussaka. Steaming hot meat soup is a staple dish in the winter, whereas fish soups are favourites in the summer. Soups are then often served with toasted garlic bread.

This bean soup is suitable for vegetarians and also vegans. As you need time to simmer the soup, I recommend using dried beans instead of canned ones. Canned beans are soft so you won’t get the sweet flavour from the long simmering process. Also canned beans can sometime have a metallic taste, or they can be too salty or mushy. For this dish, I’ve used Pelagonia white beans which I bought from Coles. The cookbook suggested navy (haricot) beans but you can use any white beans that you can get hold to.

White beans
I’ve used this white beans which I bought from Coles
Ingredients
Prepare your ingredients

  1. Firstly, soak the beans in water for about 6 hours or overnight. The cookbook requires you to soak the beans overnight, rinse and simmer the beans for around 30 mins, until almost tender. Drain and set aside. I skip this part and just soak it in water overnight and didn’t boil it. It still worked out well.
  2. Slice the carrot and celery stalk, reserves the celery leaves. Finely chopped the onion.
  3. Blend the canned tomatoes and tomato paste into a puree.
  4. Heat the oil in a large heavy pot. Add onion and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally until softened and translucent.
  5. Stir in the tomato puree mix into the pot.
  6. Add the carrots, celery stalk, celery leaves, chili and green bell pepper (if using). I happened to have some fresh chili in the fridge so I finely diced the chili and add it to the soup.
  7. Add in hot water. Bring the soup to a boil.
  8. Then add the drained beans. Reduced the heat, cover and simmer for 1-2 hours, until the beans are tender and soup has thickened. It took me about 1.5 hours for the bean to cook through. See note.
  9. Checked and stir frequently during cooking. Add more hot water if necessary. You don’t want the soup to thicken too much. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  10. Serve hot. You can serve the soup with olives, pickles and smoked herring as accompaniment. I however, serve it with garlic bread.

Recipe Note:

The cooking time of the beans and the additional amount of water needed is very much dependent on the quality, age, and conditions of the beans. There is a good blog post about the myth of cooking beans by Epicurious. Do check it out here.

Cooking Equipment:

  • Bowls
  • Large heavy pot. I used a casserole pot
  • Knife
  • Wooden spoon for stirring
  • Blender

Bean Soup (Fasolada)

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

This bean soup is easy to make with very few ingredients and some pantry staples. Serve hot with olives, pickles and smoked herring. Or with some garlic bread.

Adapted From: Greece, The Cookbook by Vefa Alexiadou [page 162]
Prepared By: Caroline|Sweetest Hour
Cuisine: Greek
Keywords: Greek soup recipe, Vegetarian, Vegan

Ingredients

  • White Beans : 500g
  • Olive Oil: 120ml
  • Onion : 1, Large
  • Fresh or Canned Tomatoes : 500g
  • Tomato Paste : 1 Tbsp
  • Carrots : 2
  • Celery : 1, including leaves
  • Dried Red Chile, Crushed : 1, Small (optional)
  • Green Bell Pepper : 1, Small (optional)
  • Hot Water : 4 Cups
  • Salt & Pepper : To Taste

Directions

  1. Soak the beans in water for about 6 hours or overnight, drain and set aside. Alternatively, soak the beans overnight, rinse and simmer the beans for around 30 mins, until almost tender. Drain and set aside.
  2. Slice the celery stalk, reserves the celery leaves. Finely chopped the onion.
  3. Blend the canned tomatoes and tomato paste into a puree.
  4. Heat the oil in a large heavy pot. Add onion and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally until softened and translucent.
  5. Stir in the tomato puree mix into the pot.
  6. Add the carrots, celery stalk, celery leaves, chili and green bell pepper (if using).
  7. Add in hot water. Bring the soup to a boil.
  8. Then add the drained beans. Reduced the heat, cover and simmer for 1-2 hours, until the beans are tender and soup has thickened. Checked and stir frequently during cooking. Add more hot water if necessary. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Serve hot. You can serve the soup with olives, pickles and smoked herring as accompaniment. Or serve it with garlic bread.

Nutrition Per Serving (Based on 6 servings):

NUTRITION INFORMATIONAVE QUANTITY PER SERVING
Calories430kcal
Protein19.3g
Fat (total)20.2g
– Saturated Fat3.0g
Carbohydrate33g
Sugars6.6g
Sodium86mg

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