It has finally become soup weather in Oakland.  It even got down to 38, which is not normal for our area.  My mint froze, and the seeds I planted a few weeks ago are not growing.   It is definitely the season to enjoy a big bowl of this Spiced Lentil Soup.

spiced_lentil_soup

This soup recipe is inspired by a recipe I saw in Delicious Magazine.  You are going to love this comforting Indian inspired soup recipe as it is packed with flavor.  I use warm spices such as cumin, gram masala, and spicy Marash chilies to season the vegetarian broth based recipe.  After cooking the soup until the lentils fall apart, I mix in spinach and then top it with garlicky yogurt.  It is really a bright and flavorful soup recipe.

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Spiced Lentil Soup

Ingredients:

** serves 4

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, finely minced
  • 2 carrots, scrubbed clean and cut into small dice
  • 3 celery sticks, cleaned and cut into small dice
  • 1 bay leave
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Marash chilies
  • 1 tablespoon gram masala
  • 1 1/2 cups orange lentils
  • 7 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 handfuls spinach leaves, I use baby leaves if you use larger, tear or cut into smaller pieces
  • juice 1/2 lemon
  • 1 cup greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 small garlic, grated on a microplane
  • cilantro, to serve with
  • fresno chilies, to serve as a garnish
  • extra lemon wedges
  • kosher salt

How To:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat.  Add the onions and cook until soft;  about 3 – 5minutes.  Add the celery and carrots, stir and cook for another 3 minutes.
  2. Stir in the bay leaves, cumin, chilies, gram masala, and the lentils.  Cook for 5 minutes over low heat, stirring every so often.
  3. Add the stock, stir and simmer over low heat for 30 – 40 minutes.  The soup will begin to thicken as the lentils fall apart.
  4. While the soup is cooking mix the yogurt, 1 teaspoon olive oil and garlic together.  Set aside.
  5. When the soup has finished cooking puree half of the soup in a food processor or blender;  then mix the pureed and the unpureed soups together.
  6. Gently reheat over low heat and stir in the spinach and juice of 1/2 lemon.  Remove from the heat and season to taste with salt if you desire.
  7. Serve in a bowl and top with yogurt, cilantro, and the chilies.
  8. Eat.

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