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Although it surprises many to hear this, Egypt in winter time can be an uncomfortably cold place. The humid, wet cold of the cities of Cairo and Alexandria, coupled with the dry cold of the Egyptian desert, means that wherever you are in the country, winter is not a wholly pleasant experience. A diet of warming foods and soups is on constant rotation during the months of December, January and February in any Egyptian household. 

Lentil soup is a mainstay of an Egyptian diet in winter time. It’s an easy soup to prepare, and both children and adults alike love it for being hearty, filling and flavorful owing to the heavy sprinkling of cumin that’s used to flavor it. As a recipe and flavor profile, lentil soup is closest to daal, an Indian dish based on yellow lentils, but the consistency is different; and a squeeze of lemon is used to flavor lentil soup just before serving. 

Although lentil soup is traditionally made with cumin, we’ve given this lentil baharat soup recipe a bit of a twist by incorporating baharat, an Egyptian spice blend that contains nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, black peppers, and cardamom. Baharat goes very well with sweet vegetables such as carrots, but we thought of combining the heartiness of lentils with the sweetness of baharat to add more flavor to this soup and to expand our soup repertoire a little bit. We add a small potato to give it some starch, and a small tomato to give it color, but generally this soup is made of very basic ingredients. Best thing of all is that it’s vegan and gluten free- perfect for every friend and family member sharing this dish with you!



Lunch, Dinner




45 Minutes




2 cups orange lentils 

1 small potato peeled and diced 

2 cloves garlic, minced 

Pinch of salt 

1 ½  tablespoons Dukkan Baharat 

1 small tomato cut into quarters

2 cups water


Step 1:

Rinse the orange lentils and combine with the potato, tomato and water in a pot. Let it boil on medium heat for 40 minutes. 


Step 2:

Monitor your lentil soup and skim off any floating grey bubbles on the top, if any. This depends on the brand of lentils. 


Step 3:

Halfway through the process, add your garlic and baharat and give it a stir and allow it to continue boiling and cooking. If it starts to over boil quickly, turn the heat to medium-low. Make sure a good centimeter of water remains resting above the lentils. 


Step 4:

Once the lentils appear cooked through, using a hand processor, mix the ingredients with the hand processor until you reach a desired consistency. We recommend one that’s neither too liquid but one with a bit of body. 


Step 5:

If it is too chunky, return it to the stove top and add a cup of water at a time and let it boil until it reaches the desired consistency. Sprinkle some lemon on it and then serve with pita chips, croutons or crackers.

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