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Yemenite Bean Soup

A combination of two local classics – a spicy Yemenite soup and a bean soup, it makes for a very aromatic blend.

Ingredients (serves 10)
  • 3 bones (marrow and knee)

  • ½ kg. stewing beef, cut into 2-3 cm. cubes

  • 2 cups white beans, soaked overnight (preferably 24 hours) in water

  • 2 onions, chopped

  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed (optional)

  • 3 carrots, coarsely cut

  • 4 tomatoes, grated

  • 1 tablespoon tomato puree

  • 1 heaping tablespoon Yemenite hawaij spice mix

  • Salt

  • 5 potatoes, cut into large cubes

  • For serving:

  • Pita bread

  • Hilbe (fenugreek) and/or Yemenite zehug paste

Heat oven to 200 degrees. Place the bones in an oven pan on parchment and brown for about 20 minutes.


In a Large pot, bring the meat, roasted bones and 2 liters of water to a boil. Skim off the foam that forms from time to time and cook until no more foam is formed.


Add the rest of the  ingredients, except for the salt and potatoes, and cook for 1.5-2 hours on a low heat until the meat and beans are soft.


Add the potatoes, season with salt and cook another 40 minutes until until the soup is thick and fragrant. Taste and adjust seasoning.


Serve with soft pita bread and bowls of hilbe and/or zehug



  • To make classic Yemenite soup: omit the beans

  • Yemenite lentil soup: Use brown lentils instead of the beans. Soak the lentils for 30 minutes before cooking.


photo: Dan Lev, Styling: Dalit Russo

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