Fasolada is a vegetarian Greek bean soup. It's a simple, hearty, country meal especially for cold winters. It's highly nutritious and filling. Serve with a flat bread and some olives...
1/2Kg (1 lb) dried beans
3/4 cup olive oil
1 can tomato juice or 3 medium ripe fresh tomatoes, finely chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 celery stalks
2 big onions
Wash beans and place them in water, allowing them to soak for a day or night. Drain the water using a colander and rinse well under running water. Place the beans in a large pot filled with enough water to cover them and boil, covered, for about 30 minutes. Drain the beans using a colander and return them to the pot, fill the pot with enough water to barely cover the beans (the amount of water will determine the thickness of the soup). Chop onions, celery and carrots and add them to the pot. Add salt, pepper, tomato paste, can or fresh tomatoes and stir. Return pot over heat and bring mixture to boil and allow an additional 20 minutes of boiling time, until the beans are soft (test using a fork). Remove from heat, add the olive oil and serve hot.
Olive oil, when consumed raw, gets to keep all its precious vitamins, so when preparing this Greek bean soup, add the olive oil towards the end of cooking time. Make sure you use extra virgin olive oil, which will surely lift the flavor.
Beans are rich in fiber, which when combined with water or liquid make you feel full for longer.