Mommy’s grated vegetable soup

Mommy’s grated vegetable soup

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"My mom’s no-knife hack – grating the vegetables – gives this soup the most unctuous, moreish texture. While you could use a meatier option, such as oxtail, the beauty of this dish is its humble beginnings." – Emma Nkunzana


  • 1 kg beef or lamb bones
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 onion, grated
  • 200 g celery, grated
  • 250 g carrots, grated
  • 1 garlic clove, smashed (optional)
  • 250 g dried red speckled beans, soaked overnight
  • 1.5 litres water

Cooking Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Place the bones on a baking tray, sprinkle with salt and roast for 15 minutes, or until slightly golden.

2. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan and add the onions. Cook until softened and translucent, about 8–10 minutes. Add the celery, carrots, and garlic, if using. Sauté for a few minutes until softened.

3. Add the roasted bones and the beans, then top up with water until the bones are submerged. Bring to a simmer, cover, and reduce the heat to its lowest. Cook for 2–2 ½  hours, stirring soup to prevent beans the beans from catching. Add more water if necessary. Serve as is or with buttered brown toast.

Find more soup recipes here.  

Videography: Kevashan Moodley and Romy Wilson
Photography: Jan Ras
Food assistant: Leila-Ann Mokotedi

Emma Nkunzana Recipe by: Emma Nkunzana
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Emma Nkunzana is a food stylist based in Cape Town. When she's not cooking or styling recipes, she can also be found kite surfing.

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