Sometimes, often times, I cook something that I think tastes good. And I have every intention of sharing it with you. But then…I forget to take photos. Or the photos I take are dark and shadowed (this typically doesn’t stop me, but maybe it should). Or there is no recipe and I can’t quite articulate how I made the dish in the first place. I mean, how does that shower of salt or that glug of olive oil actually measure out? These are the things that hinder me from sharing more good food with you. Toss in caring for our infant child and very large dog, and composing a quick post becomes a challenge.
Have I set your expectations straight? I hope so. Now it should come as no surprise that with this recipe, I have relatively lousy photos and semi-imprecise measurements. But I’m here and I’m charging ahead anyway! Because this lentil soup is worth sharing and adding to your regular rotation. It’s simple and rustic and good for you. It originates from family friends in Jaipur, India via Pom and The Blue Dress Cookbook.
This soup is a one-pot wonder. It will keep in your fridge for a week or in your freezer for…ever? It requires no sautéing of ingredients. It warms you up in the wintertime. It is meant for sharing with friends. It is my new favorite lentil soup and I think it will be yours too.
Wintertime Wonderful Lentil Soup
Adapted from The Blue Dress Cookbook
A few, little things to note: If you don’t like cilantro, just omit it! If you don’t have paprika (we didn’t), use another chile pepper you like – pinch of cayenne or dash of aleppo. I used a combination of red and brown lentils, but noticed that brown lentils require a bit more water and are firmer than the red. So, if you go the brown lentil or combo route, you will want to add at least another cup of water to the pot.
1 1/2 pounds red lentils (about 2 1/2 cups), rinsed
1 28 ounce can whole, peeled tomatoes with their juice, chopped coarse
1 big onion, chopped fine
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1 teaspoon salt
black pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 cup olive oil
6 cups chicken broth (or more if you’re using brown lentils)
1 bunch each of fresh parsley and cilantro, stemmed and chopped
juice of one lemon
In a large, heavy pot combine the lentils, tomatoes, onion, garlic, salt, pepper, paprika, olive oil and chicken broth. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat, partially cover, and simmer for about 45 minutes or until the lentils are tender. Skim foam from the top as needed.
Stir in the parsley and cilantro and simmer another 5 minutes. Season to taste with lemon juice.
Ladle the soup into bowls and serve.