Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Fijian Creamy Lentil Soup

Summer must be officially over as it is cooling down and I am making lots of soups. The best so far was a chicken, corn and noodle soup by Karen Martini on Better Homes and Gardens which I forgot to take a photo of, but I'll defintely make it again and post it.

This lentil soup I made on the weekend is delicious. It was incredibly easy to prepare and was hearty enough with a bread roll for dinner. I love that, cos you can make a big pot and reheat it easily when you don't have time (ie, Austen the baby needs to be held). The caramilised onions were a nice touch, but I don't know if I'd bother next time. Although the cummin seeds through the caramalised onions were great, maybe I'd just dry roast and add them on their own at the end.

375g (1 1/2 cups) red lentils
1 litre (4 cups) vegetable stock or water
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
2.5cm piece ginger, peeled and chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
250ml milk
1 tsp sea salt
60g unsalted butter
1 brown onion, diced
1 tsp cumin seeds

Pick over the lentils, removing any stones or discoloured ones. Rinse thoroughly and place in a deep saucepan with the vegetable stock or water, turmeric, ginger and tomato.

Bring to the boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 25 minutes, or until the lentils are soft.

Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly before transferring to a food processor and blending until smooth. Return the pureed lentils to the warm pan, stir in the milk and salt and simmer gently over low heat until ready to serve.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a frying pan over high heat. Add the onion and cumin seeds and cook, stirring occasionally, for eight minutes, or until the onions are brown and caramelised.

To serve, ladle the soup into warm bowls and sprinkle generously with cracked black pepper to taste. Scatter the caramelised onion and coriander over the soup and serve immediately.

Sathya-rating ***

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