Makhlouta is a thick, hearty Middle Eastern soup. It is made with lentils and bulgur wheat, and it is great on a cold winter day. A bowl of this soup with a crunchy salad and some toasted pita bread makes a delicious meal. By Michele Kayal
- Cutting board
- Sharp knife (adult needed)
- Large heavy-bottomed pot
- Measuring cup
- Measuring spoons
- Wooden spoon or heatproof spatula
- Pot holders
- 1⁄4 cup olive oil
- 2 onions, peeled and diced
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon ground coriander
- 1⁄4 teaspoon tumeric
- 7 1⁄2 cups water
- 1⁄2 cup red lentils, rinsed and drained
- 1⁄4 cup white or brown rice
- 1⁄4 cup coarse bulgur wheat (see note)
- 2 teaspoons salt
- Put the pot on the stove and turn the heat to medium. When it is hot, carefully add the oil.
- Add the onions, garlic, and spices and cook until tender, 10-15 minutes.
- Add the remaining ingredients, cover and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Boil for 5 minutes, then remove the lid and turn the heat to low. Partially cover and cook for 2 hours.
- Taste the soup. Does it need more spices? A pinch of salt? If so, add some and taste again.
- Serve right away, or cover and refrigerate up to 3 days.
NOTE Bulgur wheat, sometimes called cracked wheat, comes in sizes from #1, which is the finest, to #4, which is the coarsest. That’s what we use here. You can find bulgur wheat in Middle Eastern markets, as well as in natural food stores and some supermarkets.