Vanetzi Ashkile (Spinach Soup)

Christine Datian shares another special recipe, Vanetzi Ashkile (Spinach Soup), from the Holy Trinity Armenian Church Guild Cookbook, ‘The Armenian and Selected Favorite Recipes Cookbook’, just in time for the cooler season ahead.

It’s hearty, healthy and delicious!

How to order a copy of ‘The Armenian and Selected Favorite Recipes Cookbook’:

The cost to purchase a copy of the cookbook is $20.00 plus $5.00
for shipping.

To place an order, please call or contact:
Ms. Nazik Arisian
Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church
2226 Ventura St.
Fresno, CA 93721
(559) 486-1141 (office)


Make check payable to: Holy Trinity Armenian Apostolic Church.

Vanetzi Ashkile – Spinach Soup

A hearty, healthy, delicious soup perfect for cooler weather.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Course Soup
Servings 4


  • 2 lbs. stewing beef or lamb (boneless)
  • 2 large cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 1 large onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1 8-oz, can tomato sauce
  • 3-4 cups chicken or vegetable broth, or water
  • ½ cup wheat berries, shelled wheat or whole wheat kernels (also known as 'dzedzadz'. Shelled wheat is sold in Middle Eastern stores.)
  • 2 large carrots (diced)
  • 1 medium bunch green onions (chopped)
  • 1 medium bunch parsley (chopped)
  • 1 small bunch cilantro, chopped (optional)
  • Salt, pepper (to taste)
  • 2 medium bunches fresh spinach (washed, chopped)
  • 1 large lemon (Juiced – or – 1/2 lb. rhubarb, finelychopped)
  • 4 medium eggs (optional)
  • 4 Tbsp. butter -or – 1/4 cup olive oil ( to taste)


  • Brown stew meat in a large pot in butter or olive oil,tossing, until meat is brown on all sides. Add the onions and garlic,and sauté until onions are translucent.
  • Add just enough of the broth or water to coverthe meat; bring to a gentle boil. Cover pot, and braise for aboutone hour, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the tomato sauce, the rest of the broth orwater, dzedzadz, carrots, green onions, parsley, cilantro – if using, and seasonings, and bring to a full boil. Stir, reduce heat, and simmer for25-35 minutes until the meat and dzedzadz are tender.
  • Add the spinach and lemon juice (or rhubarb). Add morebroth or water, as needed, to make a stew-like consistency. Simmer for10 minutes or until spinach (and rhubarb, if using) is/are cooked.
  • Optional: crack the eggs, one at a time, into a separatebowl. Gently add each egg to the pot and steam for a few minutes until eggwhites are set.
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