On a rainy Spring day we arrived at Azabe. A small village in the Galilee, Tuscany of Israel. An area made of native Mediterranean forests of Pistacia and Oaks trees and low, dark green shrubby bush lands, alongside colorful agricultural patch work.
As you may realize by now, I will take artfully crafted home-made, poor-man food over restaurant food any time. In Azabe, a local, long rooted Palestinian family opened a back-yard eatery using local cuisine and wild foraged herbs. We gave them free will and the dishes poured in, one after another. So simple, so good!
Chopped cucumber, tomato salad that couldn’t be any fresher
A stew of brown lentils w wild dill
Whole roasted eggplant in tahini
Lentil soup w lots of onions….recipe down below using my food spying talent
Freekeh, smoked green wheat roasted w a leg of chicken
To bring a touch of the taste, here is a delicious lentil soup:
1 cup dried lentils, soaked
water to cover
1 tsp salt
black pepper freshly ground
The flavor is in sautéing the onions, by caramelizing the sliced onions on low heat, it brings out their sugars and flavor this soup. The thing that strike me when eating the soup is how clean the flavor was. With lentils we are often accustomed to strong flavors, like cumin and garlic. Often not trusting the lentils themselves.
After the onions are cooked, add the rest of the ingredients, bring to a boil and simmer for two hours until the lentils have partially dissolved.
Enjoy w a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.