Libyan Lentil Soup With Fried Onions (Hasa Adas حساء عدس)


Hasa adas is a thick lentil soup flavored with cumin and topped with caramelized onion rings, fried until crisp and extra sweet. The same soup ( sometimes made with dried meat) is poured as a sauce over a layer of toasted Arabic bread to make a warming winter comfort food called fattat adas.


Lentil Soup With Fried Onions: Hasa Adas حساء عدس

Serves 4



  • 2 cups orange lentils (washed and drained)
  • 5 cups water
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 – 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon salt


Fried Onions:

  • 2 medium onions, chopped into wings
  • oil for frying


For Topping:

  • Extra cumin
  • Toasted or fried bread (cut into cubes or triangles for flatbread)



Wash and drain lentils, wash and cut the carrot, chop tomatoes and onion.

Put the onion, tomatoes, carrot,  lentils, garlic cloves, salt and cumin in a pot.

Add about 5 cups of boiling water. Cook, until the lentils, become mushy.

Leave to cool, puree, add boiling water to desired thickness, stir well.

Chop 2 onions into thin wings, fry in a little olive oil or butter, stirring constantly until dark brown.

When serving to add a squeezed lemon and a sprinkle of cumin to each bowl then top with a tablespoon of fried onions. Place a handful of toasted bread in the soup bowl before ladling on the soup, to turn it into a more filling meal.


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