Sometimes referred to as the “national food of the Greeks,” fasolada holds a special place in every Greek child’s heart.
Made with the most basic ingredients, this soup reminds us all of home.
It’s no wonder this hearty soup has different variations throughout the Greek islands and mainland. Furthermore, most Mediterranean cultures share their own version, as well.
Of course, we’re partial to the Greek version because Fasolada is one of our cherished comfort foods.
Bean Soup (Fasolada)
1 pound dried cannellini beans
8 cups lukewarm water
3 medium tomatoes, grated (on the large holes of a box grater)
2 medium red onions, finely chopped
2 carrots, cut crosswise into ½-inch rounds
1 teaspoon tomato paste
¼ cup olive oil
1 red chili pepper, finely chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 scallions, cleaned, for garnish
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
The night before you plan to serve the soup, place the beans in a large pot with enough water to cover by 2 or 3 inches. (Chef’s tip: Soaking overnight will shorten the cooking time the next day.)
On the following day, drain the beans. Add them to a large pot and cover with water. Cook the beans, uncovered, for 30 minutes, skimming the surface occasionally to remove any foam. Drain the beans and discard the cooking water.
Return the beans to the pot, add the lukewarm water, and bring to a boil. Stir in the tomatoes, onions, and carrots. Stir the tomato paste into the olive oil. Stir this mixture into the pot of beans and vegetables. Cook the soup over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes.
Stir in the chili, celery, parsley, and salt and pepper to taste. Continue to boil over medium heat until the beans and vegetables are tender, another 20 minutes. Serve the soup garnished with scallions.
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