Mallow Melokhia Soup


Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in

Wild Food

By Roger Phillips

Published 1986

  • About


  • 2 litres ( pints) chicken stock
  • 750 g ( lb) mallow leaves
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • a good pinch of cayenne pepper, salt


    Pick only young, fresh mallow leaves, the older leaves are too fibrous and should be discarded. Wash and chop the leaves as finely as you can. I use a Chinese chopping axe and find that this way I can make a fine pulp. The chicken stock is best if it’s homemade, especially if you use a chicken which still has bits of stuffing in it. Leeks or root vegetables also make a stock richer so if you don’t have a chicken carcass to make the stock from use root vegetables and a chicken stock cube. Strain off the stock, bring it to the boil, add the chopped mallow leaves and boil for 10 minutes. In a small pan, fry the crushed garlic and salt. As it starts to brown add the coriander and cayenne pepper, mix it into a paste over the heat, then add to the main soup, stirring it well in. Cook for 3 minutes and serve.

    Mallow melokhia can be served in several ways: either as a soup with coarse brown bread; or with a bowl of rice; or with pieces of meat or meatballs added. All are tasty.

    I have adapted this recipe from the melokhia recipe in Claudia Roden’s excellent book A Book of Middle Eastern Food, 1968.