Tuesday, April 28, 2009

How to make lentil soup

Sometimes I really do amaze myself. I originally started this blog as a way to remember all the good recipes I've come across, as well as my own creations. A modern (and tidy) electronic recipe binder, without the spattered pages and faded side notes. And in spite of all my note taking, bookmarking and documenting, I still forget where that favorite soup or pasta recipe is. All I can say is that it's a work in progress.

I recently tried Dinner With Julie's Curried Sweet Potato, Carrot & Red Lentil Soup and it's definitely one for the recipe binder. It's a nice change to a curried squash soup, plus it has more depth, character and protein with the addition of red lentils. And this soup has a nice colour since red lentils turn a rich golden tone when cooked.

Another favorite lentil soup recipe is Epicurious' Lentil Soup with Minted Yogurt.

Tip! cooking with lentils

• Lentils are a great addition to soups and stews.

• Contrary to popular belief, lentils do not need to soak before using.

• To prepare lentils for cooking, rinse, drain and remove any debris or shriveled lentils you may find. Cover with water or broth and boil for 2 to 3 minutes (to aid in digestion). Reduce heat and simmer until tender. Depending on the variety and age, cooking time may take anywhere from 10 minutes to 1 hour.

• I have heard conflicting instructions with regards to adding salt. What do I do? I add salt to the lentils once they are completely cooked.

• Acidic ingredients such as wine or canned tomatoes can lengthen the cooking time. You may wish to add these ingredients after the lentils have become tender.

• Lentils are high in protein and are a must in any vegetarian diet.

Curried Carrot, Red Lentil and Sweet Potato Soup (Serves 4-6)

1-2 tablespoons grape seed or sunflower oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
2 handfuls of dried red lentils
1 medium sweet potato or yam, peeled and cubed
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 small spoonful of curry paste - powder would work too
4 cups vegetable stock
salt and pepper
1/4 to 1/2 cup light cream

In a medium pot, saute onion in cooking oil for about 15 minutes or until it starts to caramelize. Then add garlic and ginger for just 30 seconds to one minute, being careful not to burn the garlic.

Add the lentils, sweet potato or yam, carrot, curry paste, salt and pepper to taste. Stir for a minute and then add the vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down, cover and simmer for half an hour or so, until the vegetables are very tender.

When the soup is nearly done, stir in the light cream. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Turn off heat and let the soup to cool for a few minutes. Puree until smooth. Serve immediately or cool and divide into single serving containers, freezing for later.

MORE SOUP RECIPES-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Ginger Peanut Soup
A delicious, vegetarian soup that combines broccoli, cauliflower and tomatoes with the flavours with a little heat from ginger and cayenne.

Hungarian Mushroom Soup
A woodsy, mushroom soup with exceptional flavour because of the generous additions of paprika, dill and sour cream.

Lentil Minestrone
There's nothing quite as comforting as a big pot of fragrant soup simmering on the stove top. This recipe is a hearty soup with pasta, lentils, carrots and greens such as kale, broccoli rabe, chard, or spinach.

Southern Corn Chowder
I have always loved corn chowder. Warm, creamy and hearty and homey. This version is a flavourful, southern-style corn chowder with a touch of southern spice.


Chelsea said...

I'll have to give this soup a try! Your peanut ginger soup was a real hit.

Rachat de credit said...

Thanks a lot it is a very good help, now to make lentil soup is definitely easy with your guidance. Thank you

Sarah said...

Yum!! I just made this and it's delicous. Perfect for a chilly fall day. Thanks Melody!