A few years ago, for Christmas, my mom gave my sister and I our own family cookbooks. The pages were filled with all of her recipes, her mom's recipes and other favorite recipes gathered from family and friends. She must have spent hours collecting and typing, just so that my sister and I would be able to cook the meals we loved, now that we were no longer living under the same roof. Its has to be, hands down, the best gift I have ever received. Over the years, I have scribbled notes, stained pages and added some new favories. I will use it all my life, and hopefully, one day, pass it on to children of my own.
This soup, comes from that very special book. My aunt's recipe for red lentil sooup. It is the fatest, easiest and heartiest soup to make, and it is fully loaded with flavor. Start to finish this soup is done in 35 minutes, dirties only one pot, the very few ingredients are easy on the budget and most of are probably already kicking 'round your fridge and pantry. It is the perfect weeknight meal for these cold winter months.
To my Aunt and Mom, thank you for all the years of soup, they're still filling our bellies and keeping us warm!
Spiced Red Lentil Soup with Lemon & Cracked Pepper
The spices here are totally optional, I added them in for extra warmth, and because thanks to Sarah I have been trying out tumeric in pretty much everything. Mix it up, do your own thing, good recipes are better when shared.
A family favorite. Serves 4-6.
- 1 large yellow onion
- 1 stalk celery
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 heaping cup red lentils, preferably soaked overnight and well rinsed
- 1 can (850ml) whole roasted tomatoes
- 3 cups low sodium vegetable stock or water
- Spices (optional), 1/2 teaspoon each ground tumeric, paprika and cumin
- A few lemons, for squeezing, and cracked black pepper to serve
What to do
- Add oil to a large pot and heat onions and celery. Once softened, stir in lentils to coat in oil
- Add tomatoes, spices and stock/water and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes
- Add salt and pepper to taste and let cool
- Purée until smooth with an immersion blender, add more stock/water if its too thick
- Serve with a big squeeze of lemon and a couple good cracks of black pepper