December 3, 2006

Spicy Lentil Soup

After the weekend of debauchery, E and I needed something light and healthy for dinner tonight. Also, I hadn't done the shopping for this week, so we didn't have much in the way of ingredients. I read a few recipes for lentil soup to find that I did not have the required ingredients for any of them, so I improvised, and am happy to report a success. Enjoy:

3/4 yellow onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
extra virgin olive oil
1 cup lentils, rinsed
1 small can tomato paste
3 serrano chiles, chopped (left the seeds in for a super-spicy soup, your preference)
1 tsp cumin seeds, ground
1 can vegetable broth
water, as needed
sea salt
italian seasonings (literally, I have a big old container titled "Italian Seasoning" but I'm guessing any combination of oregano, rosemary, etc. will do)
1 Tbsp. white vinegar (I used rice wine vinegar, I'm guessing any light white vinegar would do)

Sautee garlic & onions in olive oil until soft. Add broth, lentils, chiles, tomato paste and cumin & bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer and stir until the tomato paste is dissolved. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, and adding water as needed (the lentils should be covered with liquid at all times) until the lentils are soft (1.5-2 hours).

Remove from heat and stir in sea salt, vinegar, & italian seasonings to taste. Serve immediately.

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