Ezogelin soup: Turkish lentil soup with bulgur, rice and drama

ezogelin soup recipe

How about a creamy, rich and aromatic soup that you can also prepare easily? Well, we wouldn't say no. And because we love such delicious Turkish soups with fruity, garlicky and wheaty flavors, today we're making Ezogelin soup.


What is ezogelin soup?

Ezogelin soup (in Turkish: Ezogelin Corbasi) is a variation of Turkish lentil soup. It consists of typical Turkish/Anatolian ingredients and is therefore Turkish home cooking as we know and love it. Bulgur, rice and red lentils are cooked with onion and garlic until soft for the ezogelin soup recipe. Separately, pepper and tomato paste, dried mint and pul biber are roasted in butter. Finally, the aromatic mix for the ezogelin soup recipe is added to the soup. The result is really impressive!


Ezogelin soup and Turkish lentil soup are classics in Turkish restaurants. However, it is often confused with lentil soup. It is common knowledge in Turkish households that rice and bulgur can also be added to lentil soup. However, what is actually an ezogelin soup would still be called lentil soup for many people. 


The tragic story behind ezogelin soup

Ezogelin means "the bride Ezo" in Turkish. The name therefore already suggests a typically Turkish and cheesy background story - and there is one! There are different versions of the story behind Ezogelin soup. We will summarize them for you in our story.


At the beginning of the 20th century, towards the end of the Ottoman era, a girl called Zöhre lived in south-eastern Turkey (Gaziantep). Zöhre was called "Ezo" by everyone, which according to some stories stood for "beautiful" or "pleasing to the eye". In fact, Ezo is said to have been known throughout the village and made an impression on all visitors and travelers passing through. When Ezo got married one day, she became "Ezo Gelin", or Ezo the bride. In Turkey, the daughter-in-law is basically for the rest of her life referred to as gelin, the bride, by her in-laws.


However, the marriage did not last long. According to some traditions, the love only came from Ezo's side. Some claim that rumors broke up the young couple. According to one version, the marriage was based on an exchange of brides, which often took place in south-eastern Turkey in the past. Ezo's older brother divorced Ezo's sister-in-law. This is said to have resulted in the necessary divorce of Ezo and her husband. After this event, Ezo marries her cousin and moves to neighboring Syria.


In Syria, the drama takes its course as the family lives in abject poverty. Some say that Ezo prepared the Ezogelin soup to impress her wicked mother-in-law. Others say that Ezo processed the only food in the house into Ezogelin soup. At the age of less than 50, Ezo died of an illness whose treatment could not be paid for due to her poverty.


Ezo's story quickly spread throughout Turkey as a drama of homesickness, sorrow and pain. Some believe that Ezo often wrote about her homesickness, longing for her homeland and heartache abroad. This poetry is said to have spread throughout Turkey with the Ezogelin soup.


Somehow, dishes with history taste even better - at least we think so. But even without the drama surrounding the ezogelin, our ezogelin soup recipe would simply be incredibly good. That's why the ezogelin soup recipe is definitely one of our favorite Turkish soups. And we're sure that you won't be able to resist ezogelin soup with lentils, bulgur, rice and drama either.


Ezogelin soup recipe: lentil soup with bulgur and rice



  • 100 grams/ half cup red lentils
  • 3 tbsp bulgur
  • 2 tbsp rice
  • 1 onion 
  • 2 garlic cloves 
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • salt


  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 0.5 tbsp paprika paste (if you won't find any, just tomato paste)
  • 2 tsp dried mint
  • 1 tsp chili flakes/powdered beaver (or to taste)
  • 1 tbsp butter/margarine
ezogelin soup recipe


Step 1: Chop the onion, press the garlic and fry both in oil until translucent.

Step 2: Pour 1 liter of water and enough salt into the pot and bring the soup to a boil.

Step 3: When the soup is boiling, add the lentils, bulgur and rice. Cook until the grains are soft.

Step 4: In a separate pan, melt the butter/margarine and add the mint, pul biber, tomato puree and paprika puree. Everything should roast nicely. Add 1 liter of water and stir until smooth.

Step 5: Now pour the mixture from the small pan into the soup and bring everything to boil. You can briefly puree the ezogelin soup once. However, it is important that the grain remains in the soup. You can also leave the blender out completely. 


Tip: Serve the ezogelin soup with a few lemon wedges!

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