Last nights dinner was widow’s soup. Maltese eat a lot of soup and this soup does not disappoint. My Nanna from Bidnija was the queen of soups. She had 14 children to feed and a husband, so it isn’t surprising that she cooked soup often. Full of goodness, easy to make, and as usual went a long way. We are out for the day today but we have enough left overs for dinner tonight too.
There are many variations to this soup. When we make widow’s soup it depends what we have available and what is in season. My mum at home used to always also put chopped kohl rabi in the soup too but I did not find it in the markets or shops. We also omitted eggs as we didn’t feel like it last night but usually we do add them. I have included them in the recipe. Spinach is also sometimes added.
Although it is Summer in London, yesterday was not Summer weather. Widow’s soup was the perfect choice and my gbejniet (Maltese cheeselets) which I made on the weekend were just ready to put in the pot too.
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 garlic cloves sliced
- 4 sticks celery (Maltese celery if you have it - karfus)
- 3 carrots chopped
- ½ cabbage shredded
- ½ cauliflower chopped into florets (include leaves)
- 150 g broad beans (replace with peas if you don't have broad beans)
- 3 potatoes chopped
- 1 courgette chopped
- 2 large tomatoes chopped
- 1 kohlrabi chopped (optional)
- 2 vegetable stock cubes
- 2 tbs tomato paste
- Warm boiled water
- 4 gbejniet (optional and can replace with firm ricotta)
- 4 eggs (optional)
- Olive oil for frying
- Into a large pot add some olive oil and fry the garlic and onion for 5 minutes or until starting to soften.
- Add the celery, carrots and fry for a further five minutes.
- Add the cabbage, cauliflower, broad beans (if adding peas only add in the last 15 minutes) and potatoes and courgette and fry all vegetables for ten more minutes.
- Add tomatoes, tomato paste and crushed stock cubes, and gently stir.
- Add enough warm boiled water to fill up to ¾ of the pot and make sure that the vegetables have been covered.
- Bring to the boil and then simmer for 45 minutes.
- Add the gbejniet or ricotta and cook for a further 15 minutes.
- If you are also adding eggs, gently crack and add on top in the last remaining ten minutes.