Herbs of the Holyland by Nissim Krispil

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Common name:


Synonym name:

Hebrew name:

עדשה תרבותית

Scientific name:

Lens esculenta


Fabaceae - bean family

Arabic name:


annual plant
0.25-0.6 m
Flowering color:
Flowering period:
Growing areas:
Grows in fields especially in the Israeli Arab sector
Originally lentil is a Mediterranean plant. The plant has pinnate leaves that composed from 5-7 pairs of leaflets and ends with tendrils.
 It has long flower stalks with 1 -3 purple or white flowers on them. The fruit is a flat legumen that contains 1-3 kernels.
Lentil soup or lentils stew are a beautiful food and a cure for strengthening the body, anemia, fatigue, high blood pressure, kidney disorders, liver disorders and more.
How to use
Lentil soup or lentil stew is a much recommended food for strengthening the body, anemia, fatigue, high blood pressure, kidney disorders and liver disorders. 
Below is a recipe for Moroccan lentil soup:
Ingredients: 2 cups of brown lentils, one medium potato, some olive oil, Hawaii powder (spice mixture), big onion, a bunch of leaves and stems of coriander, 3 celery stalks with leaves, salt, pepper, 7 cups of water.
Preparation: Sift the beans from tiny stones and dirt and soak them in cold water for about fifteen minutes. Meanwhile, chop the onion, pour the oil in a cooking pot and fry the onion until it brown. Chop the coriander and celery leaves and add them to the put.  Dice the potato and add it and the spices, after that add the lentils and the water. Bring it to boil and cook for another half an hour on low heat.
The Arabs of Israel often eat lentil soup and dishes, they believe that it strengthen the body. Lentils has a great nutritional value; its rich in iron, the percentage of protein in them is 22% and of fat 1.2%.
The growth of lentils is a long-standing, and was known in Egypt already in the Paleolithic period and in Europe in the Neolithic period. Lentils is mentioned several times in the Bible and in the Mishnah:  "And Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentils; and he did eat and drink " (Genesis 25,34). 
Maimonides counts the lentils as one of the foods which create good blood. In his opinion, a dish of lentils and barley is the best food. 
The Jews of Tunis cook lentils in coffee, sweeten it with honey and drink as a treatment for pain in the kidneys. 
Yemenites Jews mix lentil flour with egg-shells flour, and use the mixture as a medicine to strengthen teeth and gums. Also lentil stew cooked with onions, garlic and coriander is a beautiful treatment for cough and phlegm accumulated in the chest.
Moroccan Jews use lentils decoction as a poultice to treat sore eyes. Iraqi Jews cook lentils in water and honey and drink the decoction to treat kidney stones. For stains on the skin they prepare a compress from lentils, henna and barley decoction.