Sunday, February 3, 2008

Red Lentil Soup with Lemon

Red Lentil Soup with Lemon
Serves 4

3 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
pinch of ground chili powder or cayenne
1 qt chicken or vegetable broth
2 cups water
1 cup red lentils
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
1/2 lemon, juiced
3 tbsp cilantro, chopped

In a large pot, heat 3 tbsp oil over high heat until hot and simmering. Add onion and garlic, saute until golden (about 4 minutes). Stir in tomato paste, cumin, salt, black pepper, and chili powder (or cayenne) and saute for 2 minutes longer. Add broth, water, lentils and carrot. Bring to simmer, then partially cover pot and turn heat to medium-low. Simmer until lentils are soft, about 30 minutes. Taste and add salt if necessary.

Using an immersion or regular blender or a food processor, puree half the soup and then add it back to the pot. Soup should be somewhat chunky. Reheat soup if necssary, stir in lemon juice and cilantro. Serve soup drizzled with good olive oil and dusted lightly with chili powder if desired.

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