A chickpea in a pot leaps from the flame
out from the boiling water,
crying, "Why do you set fire to me? You chose me, bought me, brought me home for this?"
The cook hits it with the spoon into the pot.
No! Boil nicely, don't jump away from the one who makes fire.
I don't boil you out of hatred.
Through boiling you may grow flavorful and nourishing, and united with vital human spirit.
I don't inflict suffering out of spite.
Once green and fresh, you drank rain in the garden;
you drank rain for the sake of this fire.
~ Poem by Mowlana Jalaluddin Rumi
~ Translation by Colman Barks
This is a nutritious and healthy soup made with fresh and juicy summer fruits, tasty pinto beans (loobia chiti), buttery chickpeas (nokhod) and a little bit of spices. You will be pleasantly surprised with the textures and the delicate flavors of this hearty and flavorful soup. According to my sister-in-law, Shahnaz khanoum, in Iran my mother used to make this soup frequently and my niece and nephew still ask for grandma's orange-colored soup. I've made this soup several times in the past few months and so far this is the version of fresh fruit soup that I like the best and I'm pleased with the results. There's a second variation of this soup at the bottom of the page that you might also like.*
Fresh Fruit Soup (Ash Miveh)
1 cup chickpeas, soak overnight or for at least 6-8 hours, drain and rinse
1 cup pinto beans, soaked overnight
2 peaches, peeled, cut in chunks
2 plums, peeled, cut in chunks
2 nectarines, cut in chunks
3-4 apricots, cut in chunks
1 bunch of parsley, chopped (1 cup packed)
1 bunch of scallions, chopped (1 cup packed)
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
Salt and pepper
A pinch of red pepper flakes
A dash of crushed cardamom
1/3 teaspoon turmeric
1 cup of thin soup noodles
1-2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon/lime juice
- After beans have been soaked place them into a large pot, add 6 cups of water covering the beans. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, cover and cook for 50 minutes.
- Add the chopped vegetables, stir.
- In a small skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil and saute onions until golden brown. Add turmeric, stir well, add the minced garlic, cardamom and red pepper flakes and saute for 3-5 minutes.
- Add the content of the skillet (onion, garlic and the spices) to the pot and continue cooking for another 10-15 minutes. Add noodles and more water if needed.
- Add the fruits to the soup and simmer on the lowest heat setting for another 20-30 minutes, allowing the fruits to cook and the flavors to blend without boiling so that the fruits hold their shapes and don't become too mushy.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning and add lemon juice to taste.
*Variation: This is a wonderful and rather sweet version of the above recipe. This is more or less the same recipe as above but the following changes were made.
- In addition to the fruits and vegetables I've also added a medium-sized beet (peeled and cut into small pieces) and a small sliced carrot.
- Instead of a cup of chickpeas I used 1/2 a cup of chickpeas and 1/2 a cup of yellow split peas.
- I didn't use any spices other than salt and pepper.
- No sauteed onion and garlic either.
- For a sweeter taste I added a tablespoon of honey. You may add a tablespoon of sugar.
- This soup has a beautiful color as well as an interesting and delicious taste.