Making soup is a great way to use up any extra vegetables (the carrots are from the tagine I made in my last post) as well as delicious and cheap. It’s been freezing cold recently so I’ve been itching to make a good, hearty soup to look forward to after lectures! I’ve made this one quite thick with the lentils, as there’s nothing worse than thin, watery soup when you need something decent to warm you up. If you really don’t like spice, I would leave out the paprika in this recipe. However I feel that if you serve with natural yoghurt it balances out the spice quite nicely.
250g red lentils
a small piece of fresh ginger
1 red chilli
1 large clove garlic
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
800ml vegetable stock
Start by peeling and chopping up your carrots into rough chunks, size doesn’t matter too much here as you’ll be blending them up later. Then finely chop your onion, chilli, garlic and peeled ginger. Put a large saucepan on a medium heat with around a tablespoon of oil and once the pan is hot, add the onion, garlic, chilli and ginger. Fry and stir every now and again for about 5 minutes. Then add the carrots, three quarters of the lentils, cumin and paprika and cook for a further 5 minutes.
While the veg and lentils are cooking, boil the kettle and make up 800ml of vegetable stock then add to the pan. Put a lid on the pan and turn the heat down to low and leave to simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. After this time, the water should have reduced a little and the carrot and lentils will be soft, then add salt and pepper to taste. Use a handheld stick blender to blend out the lumps of carrot in the soup until relatively smooth. Now add the remaining lentils and put back on the hob for about 15 minutes. I add lentils in afterwards for a little more texture, as I prefer soup to be slightly chunky!
After the 15 minutes is up, serve into bowls with a big ladle, swirl through some natural yoghurt and top with the fresh parsley. You can either feed three other people with your tasty soup, or keep it in the fridge and use throughout the week!