Makhlouta is a delicious Lebanese soup that consists of many different kinds of beans. "Makhlouta" means "mixed" in Arabic. Traditionally, this soup is eaten during Lent in Lebanon because it has no meat. It's very filling, delicious, and it hits the spot during the cold months! You can use whatever types of beans you'd like. To make things easier, Eva just uses a bag of mixed beans. Of course, her elder Lebanese relatives had much more complicated methods to making Makhlouta. When cooking Lebanese food, Eva's motto is to keep making traditional Lebanese dishes by adding shortcuts to the recipes to keep up with her busy lifestyle. No matter what kind of beans you use or how you prepare them, this dish will turn out delicious!
1. Soak your beans in water overnight OR cook them in a crock pot on low for at least 8 hours
2. After they are soaked or cooked, move your beans to a large pot, add water (amount of water depends on how much broth you prefer) Eva adds enough to make it soupy
3. On medium high heat, add 3 teaspoons of salt (to taste) and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper and stir into your beans. Bring your beans to a boil
4. In the meantime, dice your onion
5. In a frying pan, add 5 tablespoons of olive oil and sauté onions until golden brown, be sure to keep stirring the onions so they don’t burn in one spot and are evenly sautéed
6. Once your beans begin to boil, lower your stove to medium heat and add your can of chickpeas
7. Once your onions are golden brown, pour them and the olive oil in your pot of beans and let it simmer for 15 minutes
8. After 15 minutes of simmering, turn stove off and let it rest for a couple of minutes before serving
9. This soup is eaten with toasted or fried pita. If you choose to fry your pita: using the same pan that you used to sautee your onions, add another tablespoon or so of olive oil, let it heat up, and add cut up pita to the pan. Stir the pita in the oil and once they are toasted/light brown remove and add to a plate with a paper towel
The healthier alternative is to toast your pita. To toast it, cut it up into small pieces, add it to a baking sheet, and bake at 350 degrees for 3-5 minutes (keep watch so they don't burn). You can also use a toaster if you're toasting smaller amounts
Add your fried or toasted pita bread to your soup & enjoy! :)
Find the recipe for Loubieh bil Zeit (shown in this picture) here!