Simple and quick to make, this Turkish red lentil soup is as nutritious as it is delicious.
Red lentils are a pantry staple. They are great to cook with and have a distinctive earthy flavour.
They do not require pre-soaking, are high in fibre, full of protein, and are quick and easy to cook. Whats more, they are really cheap, and easily available. They are highly nutritious, being low in fat, and high in protein, fibre, iron, potassium and B vitamins.
This vegetarian soup is great as a quick meal with some fresh warm bread, or in a thermos to take to work. It’ll leave you feeling full and satisfied and tastes even better the next day when all the flavours have had time to come together. For a bit of a kick, add some cayenne pepper or red chilli flakes. It’s great served either cold or warm.
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Turkish Red Lentil Soup
- 2 tablespoons olive oil extra virgin
- 1 medium onion medium diced
- 1 large potato diced small
- 1 medium carrot medium diced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1/2 teaspoon red chilli flakes
- 1 cup red lentils washed in cold water and drained
- 7 cups hot water
- 2 leaves mint optional
- half lemon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt to taste
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 Tablespoon red pepper paste
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
In a medium size saucepan, heat oil, add chopped onion and sauté on a medium heat till light brown. Add the carrots, potatoes, tomato paste and cumin and sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add the lentils, salt and pepper, water (and red chilli flakes if using) and stir well.
Simmer till carrots and potatoes are soft (approximately 20 minutes). Remove from the heat and blend the mixture. If it is too thick, add a tiny bit of hot water.
Separately, in a small saucepan, on low-medium heat, melt the butter and add the red pepper paste and salt and stir. Once it starts to bubble, remove from the heat and pour into the soup. Add lemon juice, and decorate with mint leaves. Serve with warm bread or fluffy basmati rice.