February 27, 2017

Red Lentil Soup with Lemon

soup for the soul

While it's been a relatively warm winter, I'm still deep in my phase of soups and stews. To me, there's nothing more comforting than a piping hot bowl of soup to warm you up.

beginnings of a soup

Red lentils are perfect for soup-making – they cook up quickly and add bulk and protein to your soup.

diced aromatics

The lemon and cilantro gives an extra "oomph" to this dish so don't skimp on these garnishes (even you, cilantro haters).

red lentil soup with lemon

Red Lentil Soup with Lemon
Slightly adapted from The New York Times

For a thicker soup, increase lentils to 1 1/2 cups.

3 tablespoons olive oil, more for drizzling
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon sea salt, more to taste
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Pinch of ground chile powder or cayenne, more to taste
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 cups water
1 cup red lentils
3 large carrot, peeled and diced
Juice of 1/2 lemon, more to taste
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

In a large pot, heat 3 tablespoons oil over high heat until hot and shimmering. Add onion and garlic, and sauté until golden, about 4 minutes.

Stir in tomato paste, cumin, salt, black pepper and chili powder or cayenne, and sauté for 2 minutes longer.

Add broth, 2 cups water, lentils and carrot. Bring to a simmer, then partially cover pot and turn heat to medium-low. Simmer until lentils are soft, about 30 minutes. Taste and add salt if necessary.

Using an immersion or regular blender or a food processor, purée half the soup then add it back to pot. Soup should be somewhat chunky.

Reheat soup if necessary, then stir in lemon juice and cilantro. Serve soup drizzled with good olive oil and dusted lightly with chili powder if desired.


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