Happy New Year everyone!!!
A few days ago I got a hankering for lentil soup and decided that my very favorite Easiest Lentil Soup would be on the menu for dinner.
It had been a while since I made the recipe so I pulled up the blog post on my laptop for reference (kind of a cool feeling cooking from your own recipe!). Then I went to gather my ingredients and realized that somehow, some way, I was fresh out of brown lentils.
I’m pretty sure this has never happened before. What to do??
Rather than nix my lentil soup plan, I decided to make one with red lentils. If you’ve ever cooked with red lentils you know they have a slightly different flavor and a much different texture than brown or green lentils, so I also adjusted the flavor profile of the original recipe. Here is what I came up with (and it’s really good!):
Lemony Red Lentil Vegetable Soup
Vegan, dairy-free, soy-free, gluten-free
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium yellow onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 cups red lentils, rinsed
4 cups vegetable broth (check to ensure it is soy-free and/or gluten-free if these are concerns)
4 cups water
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)
1/2 tsp. sea salt (or to taste)
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
3-4 tbsp. fresh lemon juice (from about half of a lemon)
Optional: additional veggies! (see Note)
Line the bottom of a large stockpot with water and begin to warm it over medium-high heat. When the water begins to steam slightly, add garlic and onions and saute until onions soften, about 5 minutes.
Add carrots and celery and saute another 2-3 minutes, until softened. (If anything is sticking, add a few splashes of water or broth to unstick it.)
Add the remaining ingredients (except for the lemon juice), stir to combine, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, stir, lower the heat, and simmer, covered, for 20-30 minutes, or until most of the liquid has been absorbed.
Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
Note: Additional vegetables such as fresh tomatoes, zucchini, or spinach would also be delicious in here. For tomatoes or squash, I’d go for about 1 1/2 cups and add them about halfway through the simmering time (otherwise they’ll turn to mush). If using spinach, add 1-2 cups at the same time as the lemon juice and stir until wilted.
This makes a ton of soup which is great for leftovers! I also froze a couple of portions to have on hand for after Baby H makes his or her debut. Not long now…