I brought this to Christmas dinner with my soon-to-be in-laws. They pretended to like it.

What you need

  • 32 ounces of pomegranate juice
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • Some sort of neutral cooking oil. I used sunflower.
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • a bunch of garlic cloves, minced
  • .5 cup split peas
  • .5 cup lentils
  • .5 cup mung beans
  • .5 cup barley
  • Beets, diced into small chunks – about 2 cups
  • 2 tsp dried mint. If you cant find this, get fresh mint. Wrap it in a bunch of paper towels with a silica gel packet (aka “the danger salt.”) You will have dried mint after a day or so.
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp tumeric
  • 2 cups white cooking wine or dry white wine
  • 10 cups of water or stock. I used water and vegetable “Better than Bullion”

For toppings:

  • pomegranate arils
  • sour cream or thick yogurt

Do this

  • Get a saucepan and bring the pomegranate and lemon juice to a boil
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook until the pomegranate juice becomes thick; this takes a little under two hours.
  • In a large pot or instant pot, add enough oil to coat the bottom. On medium-high heat, sweat the onions for about 5 minutes
  • Add the garlic and cook for another couple minutes until fragrant
  • Add the stock, wine, all of the spices except the mint, and the beans, peas, lentils, and barley
  • If using an instant pot, pressure cook on high for 15 minutes. If not, bring soup to a boil, then reduce temperature to medium-low and simmer for 1.5 hours or until the mung beans are tender
  • Add the mint and .5 cup of the reduced pomegranate juice
  • Add MSG (or salt if you’re basic) and black pepper to taste, making sure to simmer for a few minutes before adding more
  • Top the soup with sour cream or yogurt. You could throw in some cilantro if you’re feeling fancy.
  • Eat the soup.