Ezogelin soup ("the soup of Ezo the bride" from Gaziantep) is one of the most commonly served soups in Turkey. It is traditionally made from a mixture of red lentils, rice, and bulgur; however, I decided that using firik bulgur (freekeh) would add an interesting, smoky flavor to the soup in place of the plain rice and bulgur. To learn more about the nutritional benefits of freekeh over rice or other grains, click here.
This soup is one of the fastest and healthiest dishes you could make: the whole process takes about 20-30 at most and you are left with lots of soup to last you for a few days.
One of the most important notes on this soup is that it should always be served with fresh lemon wedges (as it always is in Turkey at any restaurant) to add some acidity.
(Makes 1 large pot, 1.5 liters)
4 tablespoons olive oil (split) (56 grams)
1 onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup dry red lentils (200 grams)
1/2 cup firik/freekeh bulgur (uncooked) (70 grams)
1 tablespoon flour (8 grams)
3 tablespoons tomato or red pepper paste (50 grams)
1/2 tablespoon dried mint (4 grams)
1 1/2 teaspoons ground red pepper (3-4 grams)
1 teaspoon ground black pepper (2-3 grams)
1-2 teaspoons salt (to taste) (6-12 grams)
1 large lemon, sliced into wedges
Red pepper flakes, for the table
- In a large soup pot, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil then saute onion and garlic until translucent (about 2 minutes).
- Add red lentils and freekeh bulgur and stir to coat with oil/onion/garlic mixture.
- Add 4-5 cups (~ 1 liter) of water to the pot and bring to a simmer. Cover with lid and allow to cook while you complete the other steps of the recipe.
- In a smaller sauce pan or saute pan, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Over low heat, add flour and stir to combine with the olive oil. Then add the tomato or red pepper paste and continue to stir until it comes together with the flour and oil mixture.
- Add 1 cup of water to the flour and tomato/pepper paste mixture. Stir to combine, then add the spices (dried mint, red pepper, black pepper, salt).
- Check to make sure that the bulgur is almost fully cooked in your soup pot. You may need to add more water. Once it is almost fully cooked, add the tomato/pepper paste and spice mixture to the soup pot.
- Continue to simmer for another 5 minutes, then remove from heat.
- Serve with plenty of fresh lemon wedges to squeeze over the top and red pepper flakes!