The Jew And The Carrot

Einat Admony's Beet Kibbeh Soup

By Einat Admony

  • Print
  • Share Share

Photo by Quentin Bacon

Kibbeh Soup

Serves 4 to 6

Part of me wants me to call it Iraqi borscht, but that wouldn’t do it justice, and I’m afraid the name would create too many misconceptions. This soup is tangy, thanks to beets and lemon being boiled together into a broth. My recipe uses a combination of rice flour and semolina instead of plain semolina, which is harder to find in the United States. I worry that this recipe won’t be around in two generations—I don’t know anyone except my sister, me, and a handful of Iraqi grandmothers who still make it. I’m relying on you to carry on the tradition!

Soup Base
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 medium leek, white and light green parts only, sliced into 1⁄2-inch pieces
2 celery ribs, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 medium beets, peeled and cut into 3⁄4-inch chunks
¼ cup kosher salt
1 tablespoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
12 cups cold water
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
¼ cup sugar

Kibbeh
1 pound ground beef
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 celery rib, finely chopped
¼ cup finely chopped fresh mint
¼ cup finely chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons kosher salt
½ teaspoon ground cumin
Pinch of ground cinnamon
Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
1 cup semolina flour
1 cup jasmine rice, finely ground
1 cup water

For the Soup Base
Heat the olive and canola oils in a large pot, add the onion, and sauté until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Add the leek and celery and cook until soft, about 7 minutes. Add the beets, salt, cumin, and pepper. Cook for another 3 minutes, then add the cold water and lemon juice. Stir in the sugar until thoroughly mixed and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 45 minutes.

For the Kibbeh
Mix together the ground beef, onion, celery, mint, and parsley in a large bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of the canola oil, 1 tablespoon of the salt, the cumin, the cinnamon, and the pepper. Combine all the ingredients thoroughly, then cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
Next combine the semolina flour, ground rice, remaining 1 tablespoon oil, remaining 1 tablespoon salt, and water in another bowl. Mix thoroughly and let it stand for 5 minutes.

To assemble the kibbeh, moisten your hands with a little water, then place a heaping spoonful of the semolina mixture in the palm of your hand. Shape it into a flat disk, then drop a full tablespoonful of meat into the middle. Carefully wrap the semolina flour around the meat mixture—it should be about the size of a golf ball.

To Finish
Gently place the kibbeh in the simmering soup and cook for another 20 minutes.

Excerpted from “Balaboosta by Einat Admony” (Artisan Books). Copyright (c) 2013.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: kubbeh soup recipe, kibbeh soup recipe, einat admony, balaboosta

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • The Jewish bachelorette has spoken.
  • "When it comes to Brenda Turtle, I ask you: What do you expect of a woman repressed all her life who suddenly finds herself free to explore? We can sit and pass judgment, especially when many of us just simply “got over” own sexual repression. But we are obliged to at least acknowledge that this problem is very, very real, and that complete gender segregation breeds sexual repression and unhealthy attitudes toward female sexuality."
  • "Everybody is proud of the resistance. No matter how many people, including myself, disapprove of or even hate Hamas and its ideology, every single person in Gaza is proud of the resistance." Part 2 of Walid Abuzaid's on-the-ground account of life in #Gaza:
  • After years in storage, Toronto’s iconic red-and-white "Sam the Record Man" sign, complete with spinning discs, will return to public view near its original downtown perch. The sign came to symbolize one of Canada’s most storied and successful Jewish family businesses.
  • Is $4,000 too much to ask for a non-member to be buried in a synagogue cemetery?
  • "Let’s not fall into the simplistic us/them dichotomy of 'we were just minding our business when they started firing rockets at us.' We were not just minding our business. We were building settlements, manning checkpoints, and filling jails." What do you think?
  • PHOTOS: 10,000 Israel supporters gathered for a solidarity rally near the United Nations in New York yesterday.
  • Step into the Iron Dome with Tuvia Tenenbom.
  • What do you think of Wonder Woman's new look?
  • "She said that Ruven Barkan, a Conservative rabbi, came into her classroom, closed the door and turned out the lights. He asked the class of fourth graders to lie on the floor and relax their bodies. Then, he asked them to pray for abused children." Read Paul Berger's compelling story about a #Savannah community in turmoil:
  • “Everything around me turns orange, then a second of silence, then a bomb goes off!" First installment of Walid Abuzaid’s account of the war in #Gaza:
  • Is boredom un-Jewish?
  • Let's face it: there's really only one Katz's Delicatessen.
  • "Dear Diaspora Jews, I’m sorry to break it to you, but you can’t have it both ways. You can’t insist that every Jew is intrinsically part of the Israeli state and that Jews are also intrinsically separate from, and therefore not responsible for, the actions of the Israeli state." Do you agree?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.