Bean soup

Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Cooking of the Mediterranean

The Cooking of the Mediterranean

By Jane Grigson

Published 1991

  • About

The standard dish of Greek family life, cheap and easy to make, and good because the vegetables have so much flavour. The quantities vary from cook to cook, for instance, I have rather reduced the quantity of beans, since most people will be serving it as a first course. Should it be the whole meal, use double the amount.


  • 225 g (8 oz) dried haricot or butter beans, soaked overnight
  • 2 very large ripe tomatoes


Drain the beans, rinse them, then put them into a large pan with plenty of water to cover, with the vegetables, garlic, rigani, half the parsley leaves and the oil. Do not add salt. Bring to the boil, boil for 10 minutes, then simmer until the beans are tender, about 1½–2 hours. Now add the salt and pepper to taste, plus the olives and extra water if the soup is thicker than you like. Simmer fo