From the Kitchen: Spiced Lentil Soup

From the Kitchen Spiced Lentil Soup

 

1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp Rice Bran (or other neutral) oil
1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp garam masala
2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp curry powder

 

1 onion, medium /finely chopped
1 green chilli, de-seeded and chopped (leave seeds in if you prefer more heat)
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
1 tbsp tomato paste
finely grated zest of 1 lime or lemon
1 big tsp honey
3 cloves garlic, crushed

 

3 cups pumpkin, chopped into 2cm pieces
1 medium kumara or sweet potato, chopped into 2cm pieces
1 large waxy potato, peeled and chopped into 2cm pieces
1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped into 1cm pieces
1 1/3 cups red lentils
1 1/2 litres vegetable stock or water
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup coconut cream
1/2 cup natural yoghurt (optional / or coconut cream)
handful fresh mint or coriander leaves

 

1/2 green chilli, sliced
1 tbsp dry-fried cumin seeds

 

1 lemon or lime, cut into wedges, optional

 

Heat oil and butter in a large heavy bottomed pot and fry spices for 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Add onion, chilli, ginger, tomato paste, zest and honey and fry over a medium gentle heat for 10 minutes, adding garlic in the last minute. Add vegetables and fry a further 2-3 minutes so that they are well coated in the spices. Add lentils and stock and bring to the boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for an hour and fifteen minutes until the lentils and vegetables are soft. Season well with sea salt and ground black pepper. Add coconut cream and cook a further 5 minutes. If you prefer a smooth soup you can whizz the whole lot, I prefer to take out half then give the remainder a bit of a whizz with the stick blender, then return the chunky bits to the pot. Serve garnished with a spoonful of coconut cream or yoghurt (optional), mint or coriander, chilli and cumin seeds. Pass lemon or lime wedges for guests to squeeze a little over, and naan or roti to dunk. Serves 6

 

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