Greek Cypriot Lentil Stew
Its carrot and celery harvest on the farm and with the cooler autumn weather upon us, its time for soup season. A hearty stew always seems to be a perfect remedy to warm up my family inside and out. Growing up, my mum always made us a hearty Cypriot lentil stew (fakes) that I just loved. A thick stew with carrots, celery, tomatoes, garlic, onion and lots of lentils topped with fresh parsley and a side of warm pita for dipping. I am sharing my mums simple recipe and one of my families favourites to warm all of you inside and out.
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium sweet onion, diced
2 large cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
3 medium carrots, peeled and cut in 1/4 inch rounds
4 celery sticks and celery leaves, chopped in 1/4 inch pieces
2 cup crushed tomatoes, with their juice
2 cup vegetable broth
1 large bay leaf
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. fresh ground pepper
4 cup cooked green lentils
1 cup Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped
In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, carrots, celery and cook for 7-8 minutes until slightly caramelized.
Add tomatoes, bring to a simmer and cook for 6 minutes. Add vegetable broth, bay leaf, season with salt and pepper. Bring liquid to a boil and reduce heat to low. Cover with lid and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove lid and stir in lentils. Simmer stew for 30 minutes until slightly thick. Turn off burner and cover with lid. Let stand for 5 minutes. Stir and serve topped with parsley and pita bread for dipping.
SERVINGS 6 -8 | PREP & COOK TIME 1 hour.