Gently Spiced Bean, Pasta & Prawn Soup

This recipe is based on Yotam Ottolenghi’s legume noodle soup which, although delicious, we felt could be improved with the audacious addition of a little chilli heat and a handful or two of prawns.

Gently Spiced Bean, Pasta & Prawn Soup

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 75 minutes
Skill level: Easy
Makes: Serves four

A long list of ingredients

  • cooked prawns – 250g
  • tin of chickpeas – 400g – drained and rinsed
  • tin of butter beans – 400g – drained and rinsed
  • red lentils – 225g
  • baby spinach – 150g
  • 2 large onions – thinly sliced
  • 10 garlic cloves – thinly sliced
  • 2 chillis – finely chopped
  • linguine or spaghetti – 100g
  • butter – 80g
  • turmeric – 1½ tsp
  • chopped parsley – 35g
  • chopped coriander – 35g
  • good vegetable stock – 2 litres
  • spring onion – thinly sliced – 100g
  • white wine vinegar – 1½ tbsp
  • 4 limes
  • soured cream – 150g (plus a little extra for serving)
  • s & p

Melt the butter in a large, thick-based pan and sauté the onion and garlic over a ­medium heat for 20 minutes by which time the onion should be soft and have a bit of colour. Stir in the turmeric and season with salt and ­pepper.

Next add the chickpeas, butter beans, lentils and stock and simmer for 30 minutes.

Add the herbs, spring onion and ­spinach, stir and cook for another 15 minutes (add a little more stock or water if the soup begins to get too thick).

Taste and season.

Add the pasta (you may have to break it in half) and prawns and cook for about 10 minutes or until the pasta is just al dente.

Stir in the soured cream, vinegar and juice from two limes.

Adjust the seasoning and serve immediately with a extra swirl of soured cream and half a lime.

Verdict: A comforting, lightly spiced and very delicious treat. Perfect for a Saturday night in I’d say.

Drink: A bottle of water for her, a bottle of wine for him. She’s eating for two, he’s drinking for two.

Entertainment: We continued our exploration of films about food with a viewing of ‘La Grande Bouffe’ (1973) on DVD. Four middle-aged Frenchmen spend the weekend in a country house, hire a couple of prostitutes and an obliging school teacher, and vow to eat themselves to death for no apparent reason. Enjoyable if a little pointless. The scene of one of the characters being spoon fed to bursting at one end whilst being manually pleasured at the other will stay with me for quite a while.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: