Teta’s Chunky Homecoming Soup

I was sat on the edge of my bed in the small room we were paying extra for on the labour ward.  I had tears in my eyes as I looked at my youngest son, unable to cuddle him as he bathed in fluorescent lights to help him with his jaundice.  I couldn’t believe this was happening again.  I was anxious and the breastfeeding and pumping schedule had utterly exhausted me- physically and emotionally.  My mother was sat next to me on the bed, and as she squeezed my hand, I started to cry.  ‘can you please make me soup when I get home, mama?’  she smiled and said ‘of course’.

My mother’s soups have helped me through many difficult times and cold days.  When she cooks them, she does it from the heart because they have also warmed her in times of need throughout her life.  This soup is the one that she made me when I came home with my first son Otis three years ago and it is the one that she made me when I came home with Rupert a few months ago.  She says that my Teta used to make it for her at the weekends when she would come home from the St. Francis boarding school in the Old City of Jerusalem miserable- especially in the winter months.

It is a delicious chunky soup and it got me through the worst nights and toughest mornings of feeding and settling Otis and Rupert so it will always have a special place in my heart.

soup and bread


1 white onion diced

3 garlic cloves thickly chopped

1 courgette peeled and chopped

2 carrots peeled and chopped

1 celery stalk, peeled and diced

3 fresh tomatoes chopped

1 pint vegetable stock

1 lemon

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


Soften the onion and garlic in the olive oil in a saucepan for a few minutes

Once translucent add the rest of the vegetables and cook for 5 minutes moving in the pan

Add the stock  and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 25 minutes

Serve with lemon wedges and warm bread and anything else you like to have on the side with your bread

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