I love lentils. They are so healthy and versatile. This soup is great! A small cup of it makes a good first course for a fancy dinner, but it’s also fine as dinner all on its own. It’s rich with many flavour notes, and it’s pretty easy to make.
- olive oil
- 1 large onion–chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic–minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- few pinches salt
- fresh ground pepper, to taste
- a pinch of chili powder
- 4-6 cups broth (I use chicken)
- 1 cup red lentils
- 1-2 large carrots–diced
- juice from 1 lemon
- chopped fresh cilantro
- more olive oil
- more chili powder
- Heat a little olive oil in a large pot, using medium-high heat
- Cook up the onion and garlic until golden brown
- Stir in the tomato paste, cumin, salt, pepper and chili powder. Let this cook, while stirring for about 2 minutes–this helps release the fragrance of the spices
- Pour in the broth. How much you use will depend on how you want the consistency. If I want a fancy, thick almost puree type soup, I only use 4 cups, if I want it more brothy and homey I use up to 6 cups. Generally I use my homemade broth, but of course you can use store-bought
- Stir in the lentils and the carrot. If you want a slightly sweeter soup, use the extra carrot, if not then one large carrot will do!
- Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover and reduce to a simmer until the lentils are soft (takes about half an hour)
- Now decide if you want smooth soup or a chunky puree.
- For a smooth soup, pour into your blender. Give it a few pulses, then leave it on puree for a bit until it’s smooth. You may need to do this in batches.
- For a chunkier puree, use a stick blender right in the pot. Just pulse it around, until it’s the consistency you like.
- Stir in the lemon and cilantro.
- Season it to taste with salt and pepper
- Drizzle a little olive oil in and sprinkle it with a little chili powder, I also like to garnish it with a little left over cilantro.
It’s best if served right away, but I store left overs in a mason jar.
Since this recipe involves broth and since you’ll have some veg scraps to deal with, I thought I’d share one of my tricks with you. Whenever I have veggie scraps, I put them into a ziplock and tuck them away in the freezer. Then when I have enough, or I have animal bones or something I take them out and use them for stock. It really economizes your veggies, nothing goes to waste and it’s a delicious and easy way to enjoy more homemade! If you want to know more about broths and stocks, check out this link: A Word about Stocks and Broths. If you’re interested to know more about bone broth, check out this link: What’s in the Couldron?