Spicy Rutabaga Fava Bean Soup

This soup has typical Finnish fall produce and North African spices. We thought that the earthy and sweet rutabaga combined really well with the rich and complex flavors of ras-el-hanout, the fava beans providing a mild backdrop to it all. Our soup’s enchanting fragrance complemented its taste in an elegant manner.

Soup ingredients:

  • olive oil for frying
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 6 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • half of a medium rutabaga (about 275 g), diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 teaspoon hot chili powder
  • 4 teaspoons of ras-el-hanout
  • 4 dl (about 275 g) dried split fava beans (you can use whole beans, but they take longer to cook)
  • enough water to amply cover the vegetables and beans (about 1 – 1 1/2 liters)
  • 3 teaspoons vegetable stock powder
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • juice of 1 mandarin
  • salt to taste

Harissa yogurt ingredients:

  • 1 teaspoon harissa
  • 1 1/2 dl soy yogurt
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of pepper

About 4 hours before starting to cook the soup I speed soaked the fava beans. Speed soaking means I simply rinsed the beans in cold water, put them in a bowl, poured boiling water on them, and covered the bowl. Of course one could soak the beans properly too, overnight in cold water.

After the beans were soaked, we started by chopping the onions and crushing the garlic. While I diced the rutabaga and the carrot, Anni put some olive oil in a pot over medium-high heat, and fried the onion and the garlic until the onion was translucent. We then added the chopped rutabaga and carrot, and fried them for a minute or two more.

Now we added the chili powder and the ras el hanout, stirred the mix for a while, and then added the beans, water, stock powder, sugar, and vinegar. We covered the pot, and simmered until the beans were soft. This took about one hour.

Anni then proceeded to purée the soup using our immersion blender until it was smooth, and adjusted the taste by adding the olive oil, the mandarin juice, and a pinch of salt.

We garnished our soup bowls with some harissa yogurt – the yogurt was simply made by combining and mixing all the ingredients in a small bowl.


  1. Posted November 19, 2008 at 18:46 | Permalink

    It’s not often I run across a recipe with so many ingredients that I have never tried. I think I will ave to make my own Ras el Hanout, so it will end up being an approximation of the real thing.
    And I have never actually used rutabaga either, so I am looking forward to trying this.

  2. Heikki
    Posted November 19, 2008 at 19:05 | Permalink

    I thought that it might be fun to make your own ras-el-hanout too. This recipe doesn’t seem too complicated, for example. Something to try, I guess. Please let me know how your ras-el-hanout experiments go, when you make it!

  3. Posted November 22, 2008 at 13:16 | Permalink

    yum!! all I’m missing is ras-el-hanout, maybe I’ll try making my own, because I adore rutabegas and favas and this looks amazing.

  4. Posted March 4, 2010 at 19:45 | Permalink

    It looks really great! I was just looking for some soup with rutabaga for the weekend and I guess that’s it! May I ask you where do you buy ra-el-hanout in Helsinki?

  5. Heikki
    Posted March 5, 2010 at 11:03 | Permalink

    No Onion, I haven’t actually bought ras-el-hanout in Helsinki. We had some I had bought in Morocco, but it’s run out now. I think that Al-Marwan might stock it, that’s where I’m gonna go ask first. Al-Marwan is a great little shop on Fleminginkatu, near the corner of Helsinginkuja. According to Google the address is Fleminginkatu 21.

  6. Posted March 5, 2010 at 12:27 | Permalink

    Thank you, I’ve never been there before, have to go to check what they have :) BTW I forgot to tell how much I adore your soup bowl :D

One Trackback

  1. […] was also blown away by this spicy rutabaga fava bean soup recipe from Tofu for Two. It’s so bloody tasty, I had it for breakfast, snack, dessert, hot, cold, with harissa […]

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