Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Awesome Red Lentil Soup
Finally winter has arrived in Colorado. I was afraid it would never happen. While the rest of the nation appears to have been buried in the white stuff – we have had all but two inches of snow in our town. Our family loves to eat soup when the cold hits. Nothing beats a nice bowl of soup when you come in from a day of playing in the snow. So I sure am glad that the time has come to make one of our favorite soups. Not only is it tasty and nutritious, it also has a pretty color from the red lentils. It looks super served in pretty white bowl! Unfortunately I didn't snap a picture last time I made it. I promise you will love this great vegetarian dish that does not take very many ingredients and is easy to make!
3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
1 big onion diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1-2 tablespoons of tomato paste
1 teaspoon of ground cumin
¼ teaspoon of salt or more to taste
¼ teaspoon of ground black pepper
6 -8 cups of low salt chicken or vegetable stock
1 cup of red lentils
2 carrots, peeled and diced
lemon or lime juice
1. Put olive oil in a large pot to coat the bottom of the pot. Preserve the rest of the olive oil for drizzling over the soup later. Heat the olive oil in the pot until it is very hot. Add the diced onions and the garlic. Saute until golden and soft, for about 4 minutes.
2. Add tomato paste and spices to the pot and stir in with the onion and garlic. Saute for another 2 minutes.
3. Add the stock, lentils, and dices carrots. Bring to a boil and turn down the heat. Then cover the pot and simmer over medium low heat until the lentils and carrots have softened. This takes about 30 minutes. Add more salt and pepper if need be.
4. Puree about half of the soup with an immersion or regular blender. You don’t want to puree all of it unless you like your soup very smooth. We prefer more of chunky type of soup.
5. Right before serving the soup pour in the lemon juice, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle some cilantro on top.
6. Serve with crusty bread.