Red Lentil Soup

Saturday, December 10, 2011

I just discovered red lentils about a year ago. They seem extra special, and a little more flavorful, than brown lentils. They are a beautiful orange-ish red, and turn yellow when cooked. They may be a little more difficult to find than brown lentils; I looked at three stores before finding them at Meijer.

This soup is delicious! I had just enough celery leaves that I had frozen from this summer's CSA, and I do wonder if the exceptional celery I used made a difference in the flavor. Hopefully when I make it with store-bought celery I'll like it just as much.

The original recipe gave instructions for making pita croutons and cooked onion for garnish. I went ahead with the extra steps and it was very worth it, only I just used my own pita chips, which I make at least once a week anyway. I ate two bowls of this soup, with the suggested garnish, and was full and happy for the rest of the day! For a hungry girl like me, that is an accomplishment for any soup. :)

2 T. olive oil
2 c. finely chopped onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 t. ground cumin
1 t. ground coriander
8 c. vegetable stock
1 3/4 c. dried red lentils
2 carrots, finely chopped
1/2 c. coarsely chopped celery leaves
pinch of red pepper flakes
1/4 c. fresh lemon juice
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste (I found I didn't need any at all!)

2 T. olive oil (I only used a teaspoon)
1 large onion, thinly sliced
2 pita pocket breads (I used two of my homemade pita chips for each bowl)

Heat the oil in a dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the cumin and coriander; stir for about 30 seconds.

Stir in 6 cups of the vegetable stock, the lentils, carrots, celery leaves, and red pepper flakes. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat; cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender, about 30 minutes. Stir in the remaining 2 cups of stock and the lemon juice. Season to taste.


Simply slice the onion thinly and cook it in the oil until very tender and lightly browned.
Make pita chips (my recipe here).

Top each bowl of soup with a small mound of cooked onions and pita chips broken up into pieces.

Source: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup by Paulette Mitchell


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