A variation on a Molly Katzen recipe I found on the Internet. Though the spices are quite different, the basic ingredients -- tomatoes, lentils and chickpeas -- remind me of the popular Moroccan soup called harrira. Have not yet tried this one but as fall comes, this will certainly make an appearance in my soup pot.
- 1 cup lentils, sorted & rinsed
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 7 cups water (more or less)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 cups minced onions
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed (canned is fine)
- black pepper
- cayenne pepper
- currants (optional)
- plain yogurt (optional)
- parsley, chopped (optional)
- fresh mint, chopped (optional)
- In a large soup pot, place lentils with the cinnamon stick in 7 cups water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook until tender, about 30 minutes. Remove and discard the cinnamon stick and drain the lentils, reserving the liquid.
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a soup pot. Add the onion, garlic, salt, turmeric, cumin seeds, ground cumin, and bay leaves. Saute over medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes or until the onions are soft. If the pot gets a bit dry moisten with some of the reserved lentil water.
- Measure out the reserved lentil water and add water to reach 6 cups of liquid and return to soup pot with the spiced cooked onions. Add the canned crushed tomatoes with juice and bring to a boil. Lower heat to a simmer, partially cover and cook for another 15 minutes or so.
- Stir in the chickpeas and lentils and cook for about 5 minutes to warm through. The legumes should not become mushy.
- Season to taste with the two peppers and lemon juice; adjust salt.
- Serve hot with some yogurt [omit for Vegan], a sprinkling of parsley or mint, and currants, if desired.
Loved the seasonings in this Toni. The cinnamon cooking with the lentils was out of this world aromatic. I thought that the cumin seed and the ground cumin might be a bit strong but it all worked perfectly. I found that the lentils still had a tiny bit of crunch when I ate it. Check them for tenderness before you scoop them into serving bowls. If your a hardcore Meatitarian chopped chicken would not be amiss in this at all.
This was a very tasty soup. My 2 year old daughter LOVED it. The blend of spices was very nice and the toppings (we used yoghurt, currants, and parsley) made it a bit "different" to your everyday soup. I did have to make a change, as I realised at the last minute I had no canned tomatoes. So I used 2 cans of pureed ones, instead. I do think the "body" of the crushed ones would've improved this, as the broth was a bit too thin. Next time I think I will also use stock or add a few tsps of stock powder to the water, as did need a lot of salt. I also think some diced carrots would be good in this. I also have to wonder if you could just cook the lentils with the rest of the ingredients, adding a bit of stock or water if needed. That would save a step and probably thicken it up a bit.
Fabulous!! Easy and great taste.