Tomato Rice Soup

This month’s MENA Cooking Club is hosted by Evelyne of Cheap Ethnic Eatz. This month’s country was Jordan, and the recipe I chose was Jordanian Tomato and Rice Soup – although it veered into desi territory as I used ghee since I have a fresh made batch, and I ended up adding a few more spices (I opened up the cabinet for a cinnamon stick and…well, you know how it goes).

This soup is warm and wintry: spiced tomato broth thickened with basmati rice, and it’s completely simple, made from ingredients I mostly have on hand – which is great, because we are having a streak of frigid weather (how do you Canadians/Chicagoans/etc. do it?!) and I am happy warm and cozy over the stove and refuse to venture out for procurement. We are out of coffee, my life blood, that’s how much I don’t want to go to the store.

Anyway, the kids loved it and so did I, so thank you Evelyne for the lovely suggestion!

Tomato Rice Soup

  • 1/3 cup basmatic rice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, grated
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • red chili (just a pinch because kids…you can add a little more if you like)
  • 4 roma tomatoes, chopped
  • salt
  • limes for serving

Rinse the basmati rice well and soak as you prepare the rest.

Heat ghee on medium high in a heavy-bottomed pot, and saute onions until they are beginning to turn golden. Add garlic and saute a minute or two, being careful not to burn, then add cumin, paprika, garam masala, turmeric and red chili and saute for a minute. Add tomatoes and a good couple pinches of salt and cook until they are well broken down and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 10 minutes.

Add about 6 cups of water, scraping the bottom of the pot and stirring well, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes.

Bring back to a boil and add rice. Keep at a high simmer for about 15 minutes, gently stirring often. Add more water if necessary (I didn’t need to).

Lower the heat, adjust seasoning if necessary (another pinch or two of salt), and serve brightened up with limes.