The other day I posted the pic of my spiced lentil soup on Instagram. It looked like baby poo. As it always does. I’ve made this soup in different ways on many different days and it ALWAYS looks like baby poo.
Which leaves me in a quandary: produce a soup that is a mildly unappealing hue and bit rough on the eye, or give up on it altogether and miss out on it’s exuberant spicy deliciousness. No, I definitely can’t give it up.
Apparently a few of you are prepared to overlook it’s unpleasant visage too. I had a number of requests for the recipe, so here you go!
The Best Spiced Lentil & Veg Soup
1 brown onion
3 garlic cloves finely chopped
a thumbsize piece of ginger grated
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp tumeric
1-2 tsp ground cumin
1-2 tsp curry powder (I use good ole Keens and probaby use a tablespoon, but that’s up to you)
1 stick celery finely sliced
2 medium carrots diced
2 parsnip chopped in cubes
2 potatoes chopped in cubes
1 sweet potato chopped in cubes
2 cups of pumpkin chopped in cubes
8 cups of vegetable stock (or homemade chicken stock or water with a couple of stock cubes)
1 cup lentils
- Get yourself a bigass soup saucepan. I use a large heavy based, cast iron casserole pot.
- Gently fry off the onion in a few tablespoons of coconut oil, the secret is to keep the temp reasonably low, you want to cook the onion for a good ten minutes or more. Get it really soft and caramelised.
- Add the celery, carrot, garlic and ginger and cook. Keep the heat medium to low, be gentle.
- Add all your spices and toast, keep stirring the whole time so they don’t burn. And again keep the heat medium to low, be gentle.
- Throw in the remainder of your vegetables and give them a good stir around in the pan to coat with oil and spices.
- Add your stock and bring to the boil. Make sure the veg is well covered with stock, if it’s not just add more water or stock.
- Give it a few minutes boiling and then add the lentils.
- Turn down to simmer and then cook for about 30 minutes. I just keep checking every now and again that there is plenty of stock and see where the veg is at.
- Once your veg is very soft and well cooked and the lentils are soft you can puree. Some people like it chunky, I like mine smooth. Totally up to you.
- At this point you can add a few handfuls of spinach if you like.
- Finally if you like you can add any or none of the following – salt and pepper to taste, a spoonful of yoghurt or coconut milk, a squeeze of lime, freshly chopped chilli, curry leaves or freshly chopped coriander.
This makes a ginormous pot of soup as you can imagine, I split this into about 6-8 decent serves. And why not share it with a friend, it tastes better that way 🙂