Do you know how to use up spinach stems? Add them in a comforting Middle Eastern Lentil Soup. It becomes tastier and more nutritious with this little addition. Plus, you are not wasting food.
Did you see the Fried Eggs With Spinach recipe I shared here a while ago? In that post I asked you to put the stems of spinach aka “spinach heads” aside for a later use to make a super nutritious Middle Eastern Lentil Soup. Let me clarify what I mean with spinach heads. The end or the root of spinach stems which is in pinkish color. You can see them in the picture above. I used these raw ones for garnish only.
I learnt this soup from mom, who hates wasting food. To my surprise, I haven’t met anyone yet who knows this method of her. If you don’t want to waste spinach stems(which are so tasty when cooked by the way), give this spicy Middle Eastern Lentil Soup recipe a try!
When I was a child, I used to watch mom with a great admiration as she used to make perfect Spinach Borek and keep the stems for another recipe. Some days later, she used to cook this scrumptious green lentil soup using spinach stems. This is not a very common dish in Turkish cuisine, but a minority of Turkish women make this pantry-friendly dish and teach their kids not to throw any parts of food away.
Middle Eastern Lentil Soup
This lentil soup is a great way to use up spinach stems.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 4 1x
- Category: Soup
- Cuisine: Turkish
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tomato, chopped
- 1 cup spinach stems, washed well and chopped roughly
- 1 cup green lentils
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cumin
- 3 cups hot water
- ½ lemon, freshly squeezed
In a medium pan, heat olive oil and cook diced onion until translucent.
Add in tomato paste and chopped tomato. Cook for 2-3 minutes over medium low heat, stirring occasionally.
Add in spinach stems and lentils. Give it a stir.
Season with salt and spices. Pour 3 cups hot water and the lemon juice into the pot.
Cook until it boils. Bring it to the lowest heat and let it simmer until lentils are tender, for about 20 minutes.
If you think it’s getting too thick, you can add a little extra water.
Keywords: lentil soup, spicy, middle eastern, Turkish, green lentils