Soup There It Is: Indian Spiced Red Lentil Soup

Everyone is looking for a good soup recipe come winter. This one adds extra warmth with chili powder, and is packed with nutritionally dense veggies and lentils.

Indian Spiced Red Lentil Soup

Adapted from Summer Tomato

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium yellow or white onion
4 celery stalks
1/2 lb baby carrots
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 tablespoons tomato paste
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 teaspoon chili powder, or more to taste
2 quarts vegetable stock
2 cups water
1 pound (2 cups) red lentils, rinsed with cool water and sorted to remove any small stones
1 can (about 14 ounces) diced tomatoes
Lemon wedges

1.  Chop carrots, celery and onion.  I like big hearty chunks of vegetables so I do a rough chop instead of a fine dice, but either works nicely.

2.  In a soup pot or 5-6 quart deep sautee pan (I use this) heat olive oil.  Once hot, add carrots, celery and onion and sautee until the onions and celery become translucent and possibly brown at the edges (about 8 minutes).  Stir often.

3.  Stir in the cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.  Cook, stirring, for 1 minute more.

4.  Add the stock, water, lentils, tomato paste and canned tomatoes.  Bring to a boil, cover the pan, and turn the heat to medium-low.  Simmer the soup for one hour.

5.  Serve alongside lemon wedges, which can be squeezed over the hot soup to enhance the flavor.

This recipe makes a lot of soup (approximately twelve servings).  After cooking, I allow the soup to cool completely and freeze 2-4 servings.  El Profesor and I will typically eat the rest over the course of a week.

To make it a full meal:

Vegans – Add a side of baked potato topped with Earth Balance or some potato wedges that have been roasted in olive oil and sea salt.  If eating a smaller serving of soup, add a side of greens as well.  Spinach works nicely here.

Carnivores – Add a side of roasted salmon or baked chicken.  If eating a smaller serving of soup, add a baked potato as well.

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