Molokhia is a soup made from the leaves of the molokhia plant, which is also known as “Jew’s Mallow.” The plant is difficult to find fresh but is available frozen at most Middle Eastern markets. Popularly referred to as “The National Dish of Egypt,” it dates back to the time of the pharaohs, making it particularly appropriate for Passover. My mother-in-law, a Sephardic Jew from Egypt, makes this for most family gatherings and serves it instead of matzah ball soup at our seders. It is traditionally served with rice, which is acceptable to eat during Pesach according to Sephardic tradition.
Molokhia Egyptian Beef Stew
- 1 pound beef stew meat
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 tomato, chopped
- 3 chicken bouillon cubes
- 1 package defrosted minced molokhia (can be found in Middle Eastern grocery stores)
- Pickled Onion:
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- ½ cup white vinegar
- Spice Mixture:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2-3 tablespoons ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Place beef in a large soup pot with 1.5 quarts of water and bring to a boil. Skim off the top as it boils.
- Add onion and tomato and simmer for 1.5 hours.
- Add bouillon cubes and bring to a boil. Add molokhia and bring to a boil again. Remove from heat.
- In a separate bowl, add finely chopped onion and white vinegar. Let stand for 30 minutes.
- Heat oil in a skillet and add coriander, cumin and garlic. Sauté for a few minutes. Add to the prepared stock and bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper to taste and remove from heat.
- Serve with cooked white rice and pickled onion.