Saturday, May 19, 2012

Lentil Soup

I have to admit, lentil soup doesn't really look that appetising. It mushy and a funny colour. It is one of my favourite soups though; it has been ever since I first tried it in Dubai. There it was more yellow so perhaps they used a different type of lentil. I use red lentils and my soup always turns out a slightly brown colour. You can add lentils to loads of different foods but this particular soup is purely lentils. I add an onion for flavour, but more important is plenty of cumin and salt. It may not look exactly the same as the delicious soup that I had in Dubai but it tastes pretty good and it is very filling. Plus it is fast and it is cheap, making it a perfect meal for a student. Pair it with some awesome bread, like fresh flatbread, something I have not yet mastered. In Dubai they would just keep bringing out bowls of the most amazing flatbread, soft and chewy and warm. Instead I had mine with ciabatta and that was good too. Lentils are really good for you so this soup will give you a boost of healthy stuff like iron, fibre, folate, vitamins and minerals.

Lentil Soup

1 tablespoon butter
1 large onion, diced finely
1 tablespoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon crushed chilli (optional)
4 cups water
2 cubes chicken stock
1 cup red or yellow lentils
Salt to taste

In a large saucepan melt the butter, then add the onion and cook until it is soft and translucent. Add the cumin and chilli and cook until it is fragrant. Then add the water and stock and bring to the boil.

When the liquid is boiling add the lentils. Apparently it is better to add them to boiling water instead of placing them in cold water and bringing it to the boil together. It will be easier to digest. Let the lentils simmer for about 30 minutes, then blend it with a hand blender until you have a relatively smooth soup. Taste it and then season it generously with salt.

Total calories = 800
Makes four servings, 200 calories each

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